Anthropology | Genes and Human Evolution
B400 | 15250 | Kaestle

The field of biological anthropology increasingly relies on genetic
and genomic data to test and generate hypotheses regarding human
evolution.  In this seminar we will review some of the latest genetic
evidence concerning human evolution, and along the way will become
familiar with many of the methods of genetic analysis used both in
this field and in many others (forensics, medicine, genetic
engineering, animal behavior, conservation, etc.).  Topics covered
will include, but are not limited to, human vs. ape genomes, the
origin of modern humans, Neanderthal genetics, evidence of selection
on the human genome, genetic influence on human physical and
physiological traits, genetic influence on human behavioral traits,
epigenetic effects on the human genome, and additional topics to be
determined in discussion with enrolled students.  Grades are based on
discussion participation, written critical commentaries on 5 selected
readings, and a research paper. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or
instructor's permission.