Biology | Heredity, Evolution and Society
L369 | 4144 | Hudson, R
Course Format: Lecture and occasional small group discussions:
10:30A-11:20A, D, JH 239.
Prerequisites: No course prerequisites. Familiarity with basic algebra
skills is beneficial.
Course Description: This lecture/discussion course examines the theory
of evolution both as a basis for explaining human biology, behavior,
and society, and as a framework for understanding our interactions
with other species. Students will study and evaluate the evidence for
this theory in general and for the evolutionary descent of humans in
particular. You will learn how changes in gene types and abundances
can underlie the evolution of complex traits such as the behaviors of
humans and other animals. You will also investigate how parasites,
pathogens and parasitic genes have affected human evolution, how human
activities such as the over-use of antibiotics are in turn affecting
their evolution, and how other activities that reduce and eliminate
plant and animal populations have some surprising ramifications.
Developments in modern genetics that impinge upon human society and
our environment, such the genetic engineering of crops, will also be
Required Text: Goldsminth, Timothy H. and William F. Zimmerman,
Biology, Evolution, and Human Nature.
copyright 2001 @ John Wiley and Sons, Inc. (New York).
Weekly Assignments: Two-to-three chapters of text along with readings
of selected articles.
Exams/Papers: Three non-cumulative exams and one cumulative final.
These will include application and conceptual questions in addition to
those requiring recall of course material. Other graded componenets
include frequent quizzes and class participation.