Biology | Biol Basis of Sex Differences
L340 | 1196 | Smith, G
This course will introduce students to the approaches used to study
the biological mechanisms that underlie male-female differences in
anatomy, physiology, and behavior. The course will address both
functional (evolutionary/ecological) and mechanistic
(developmental/physiological) explanations for sex differences. The
course will take a comparative approach and will compare the
biological causes of sex differences across many different species.
Questions addressed will include the following: Why did sex evolve?
What evolutionary mechanisms led to sex differences? How is sex
determined? What role do hormones and genes play in sex
differences? Are there sex differences in the brain, and if so how
do they arise and are they related to sex differences in behavior?
What differences exist between men and women, what biological
hypotheses have been proposed to explain sex differences in humans,
and how do we evaluate these hypotheses? Is there a biological basis
of sexual orientation?