A105 2004 Final Exam Study Guide
Your final exam will have about 80 - 100 OBJECTIVE QUESTIONS, mostly with a multiple choice or matching format. Some of these multiple choice questions will simply ask you about basic facts, but some will be more complex, as on the previous in-class exams.
We will assign you a grade based on your score, and this grade will be worth 25% of your course grade.
The exam is partly COMPREHENSIVE, because it will ask you to make connections between the major topics covered at different times in the semester.
In addition, over half the questions on this exam will specifically cover the lectures and section topics since the last in-class exam, with a particular focus on the following reading assignments
- text chapters 8-11 and 13 (skip chapter 12, we have not been able to look at the rise of civilization!)
- The assigned sections from the special Scientific American issue
Reminder: I have posted lecture outlines and additional notes on the class web page. While they aren't as pretty as the in-class versions, they ain't bad and should help remind you about the main points we covered in class. Take advantage of these resources to help you study! Review all the terms that have been mentioned in class and highlighted in the readings. You will be expected to understand these terms when used in the context of a question.
Important specific concepts and terms to review since the last exam:
- anatomical differences (including brain sizes) between different hominid taxonomic groups, especially the australopithecines and species of Homo, including Homo habilis, Homo erectus, archaic Homo sapiens, Neanderthals (Homo sapiens neanderthalensis) and modern humans Homo sapiens sapiens
- Time periods and regions in which different taxonomic groups of hominids lived, and what cultural patterns, economies and technologies they were associated with.. here are some blocks of time to focus on:
- 7-5 million years ago
- 5-2.5 million years ago
- 2.5 - 1.5 million years ago
- 1.5 - 1.0 million years ago
- 1.0 - 0.5 million years ago
- 500,000 - 200,000 years ago
- 200,000 - 100,000 years ago
- 100,000 - 50,000 years ago
- 50,000 - 10,000 years ago
- 10,000 - 5000 years ago
- What types of technology/culture have been associated with different species of hominid in different parts of the world?
- When/where were the following different prehistoric technologies found, and what were the types of behaviors and technological skills and artifact types known to be associated with them:
- Middle Paleolithic (e.g. Mousterian in Europe)
- Upper Paleolithic
- Mesolithic (e.g. Natufian)
- What information has genetics (e.g. Mitochondrial DNA and other sequence data from nuclear DNA) contributed to our understanding of the origins and spread of modern humans, compared to other living animals and ancient neanderthals? How has genetics contributed to our understanding of when people arrived into the Americas? The text and Scientific American chapter by Cann are particularly useful for this question.
- How do different types of evidence (anatomical, archaeological, genetic) fit into or contradict the competing models for the origins of modern humans?
- If a site was discussed in detail in the readings, you should be familiar with what was found there and how it was interepreted, so that you could be prepared to recognize and interpret a description of "finds" from a similar , unnamed site. We won't ask you to NAME the site, but we will ask you to interpret the type of evidence that was found there, based on your knowledge of similar sites. The only specific sites that may be mentioned on the exam are:
- Klasies River and Blombos
Here are some examples of the types of specific questions you will be asked.
- What types of tools did Upper Paleolithic people make?
- What's the difference between a neanderthal and anatomically modern human?
- How would you compare the life history patterns of Homo erectus to earlier hominids or other primates?
- Has any evidence for cannibalism been discovered in the human past? How is it recognized? How could you distinguish cannibalism from other types of mortuary practices (special treatment of bones of dead)?
- The most recent bones of neanderthals that have been found date to which time period?
- What anatomical traits are associated with "archaic Homo" compared to other hominids?
- What's the Levallois (prepared core) method? Why is it important?
- What distinguished Mesolithic (e.g., Natufian) ways of life from earlier cultures?
- When and where did farming (agriculture or herding) first appear? What explanations do archaeologists offer to explain the origins of agriculture?
- When did people first arrive in North America and Australia? What hypotheses have been proposed to explain how they first arrived and from where?
- What was the characteristic tool type of the Acheulian?
- Which hominid was the first to leave Africa?
- When were different parts of the globe colonized, and by which homind?
- Who made Mousterian (Middle Paleolithic)tools?
- What is the oldest evidence for the controlled use of fire? Which hominid is associated with it?
- When do we begin to see artificial structures for the first time?
- What do we know about the earliest evidence for art? Other types of symbolic expression?
- What hypotheses exist about the origins of language, and what kinds of evidence exists to evaluate these hypotheses?
- During which time phase did humans first colonize temperate environments?
- For much of the human past, people seemed to live in egalitarian societies, where everything was shared. In recent times we find some people accumulating wealth, while others have very little. When do we first see evidence of this type of socio-economic/status differentiation in the past?
- How do anthropologists explain/understand the concept of "race" applied to humans, and how does this concept fit into what we know about human diversity in the past?
Many of the questions on this exam will be comprehensive, in that they expect you to remember the basic concepts (e.g. adaptation, adaptive radiation, and basic primate traits) covered on the first two exams, and put them in general context. You will be asked questions that bring together and compare the large patterns of biological and cultural change we have studied, within a general evolutionary and primatological framework.
Here are some examples of the types of general/comprehensive questions you will be asked. You will review some examples in section this week.
- Review the main evolutionary concepts we studied the first third of the semester (Microevolutionary mechanisms: natural selection, adaptation) (Macroevolutionary mechanisms: adaptive radiation and different ways speciation and extinction can occur... founder effect etc) and think about how we can apply them to interpret the fossil and archaeological record of human evolution.
- Is there any evidence for an "adaptive radiation" leading to biological speciation in human evolution?
- Can you think of hominid fossil examples of anatomical adaptations to particular ecological conditions?
- Why is an understanding of ancient climate change important to understanding patterns of human evolution?
- How has the balance of inherited (biological) adaptation and cultural capabilities helped hominids survive during different periods? (how important does culture seem to be, compared to anatomy, for different species, for example)
- How have studies of living primates contributed to our knowledge of human evolution?
- In what ways do you think having knowledge of the long-term history of the human past and extinct ways of life relevant to understanding the challenges we face as humans today, and in the future?
- How have hominid biological variability and cultural variability changed through time?
- How does the cultural variation between different populations of chimpanzees today compare to the cultural variation known to exist between different proto-human and human populations in the past?
- How would you characterize the rate of technological change during different periods of the stone age? (For example, are there any periods when little change seems to occur and other periods when change happens rapidly? How would you describe the overall pattern?
- How do the meat eating and hunting patterns of living chimps compare to the meating eating and hunting patterns of early hominids?
- Think of modern human anatomy as a mosaic of traits that have developed their current anatomical status at different points in time. If you were to create a timeline of the sequence in which the modern anatomy of different parts of the human skeleton first appear in the fossil record, what sequence would they be in (oldest to youngest)? (e.g., which evolved first, big brains or bipedalism? what about stereoscopic vision vs loss of hairiness?) In other words, can you order the sequence of traits in terms of which ones are the most primitive, or most derived?
- If you were to create a timeline of the sequence in which evidence of distinctive modern human behaviors first appear in the archaeological record, what sequence would they be in (oldest to youngest)? (e.g., which appeared earlier, cutting tools or spears?)
- Review the phylogenetic patterns of the major anatomical adaptations (e.g. brain size ? locomotion?) and behaviors (e.g. tool making? hunting?) that are shared by all primates, are shared only by Anthropoid primates, are shared only by hominoids, are shared only by hominids, are shared only by Homo, or distinguish modern humans from all other primates. In other words, use a table like the one below to help you organize the major traits that distinguish each of the taxonomic groups.
|| fossil Homo
|| Homo sapiens sapiens
What traits to all primates share ?
What traits distinguish anthropoids from prosimians ?
What key traits distinguish apes & humans from monkeys ?
What key traits distinguish the human family from apes ?
What traits distinguish the genus Homo from other fossil humans?
How are modern humans different from other hominid species?
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