Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? It is more important for students to understand ideas and concepts than it is for them to learn facts. Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.
The reading and the lecture both discuss the possibility that many dinosaur species possessed feathers like modern birds. The reading offers many arguments in favor of this opinion, while the lecture disputes those claims. First, the reading claims that since all modern and extinct bird species had feathers, it is reasonable to assume that they inherited this trait from their dinosaur ancestors. The lecture agrees that birds probably did inherit their feathers from their ancestors, however, their ancestors were predatory theropod dinosaurs. Plant-eating dinosaurs have no living relatives to compare them to, so we cannot assume that they had feathers. Second, the reading states that there is physical evidence of feathers in many fossils from unrelated dinosaur species, including plant and meat-eaters. The professor admits that some fossils show feathers, however, he points out that many skin impressions show no evidence of feathers at all. In fact, many well-known plant-eating species had scales and armor plates, but no feathers. Third, the reading says that feathers most likely evolved as a way to stay warm and that many dinosaurs had these filament-like feathers. The professor says that feathers are a good way to stay warm, however, he says that larger dinosaur species probably had another characteristic called gigantothermy. Animals can be so large that their internal temperature does not change much compared to their environment. Large dinosaurs could have used this method over feathers, which would have blocked the sun from their skin. Key Points
Submitted by Hari Prasad Adhikari on