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[LIFESCI 2D03] - Final Exam Guide - Ultimate 80 pages long Study Guide!


Department
Life Sciences
Course Code
LIFESCI 2D03
Professor
Rashid Khan
Study Guide
Final

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McMaster
LIFESCI 2D03
FINAL EXAM
STUDY GUIDE

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Animal Behaviour Chapter 1
The Science of Animal Behaviour
1.1 Animals and Their Behaviour Are an Integral Part of Human Society
Humans have been depicting animals and their behaviour for tens of thousands of years, as
proven by prehistoric cave paintings. Animals provide working companions, research subjects, and
entertainment.
Recognizing and Defining Behaviour
- Animal behaviour: any internally coordinated, externally visible pattern of activity that
responds to changing external or internal conditions
- Internally coordinated: information processing that occurs within the animal’s body
- Externally visible: patterns must be observable and measurable, including behavioural
responses to changing conditions
Measuring Behaviour: Elephant Ethograms
- Ethogram: a formal description or inventory of an animal’s behaviours
Ethograms typically list or catalogue defined, discrete behaviours that a specific
species exhibits.
Using an ethogram, a researcher can measure the frequency, duration, rate, or
intensity of a behaviour.
- Different people must be able to recognize a behaviour independently
- Time budget: a summary of the total time and relative frequency of different behaviours of
an individual
- Ethograms are typically constructed for animals in captivity and used as a baseline for
healthy behaviour.
1.2 The Scientific Method is a Formalized Way of Knowing About the Natural World
Process of science: observing events, organizing knowledge, and providing explanations through
the formulation and testing of hypotheses
The Importance of Hypotheses
- Hypotheses are explanations that make testable predictions.
- The facts produced by experimentation that tests hypotheses are the results of many
repeated scientific studies.
The Scientific Method
- Scientific method: a formalized process that involves testing of hypotheses; observation,
research question, research hypothesis, prediction, methodology (testing of prediction),
analysis of data, results
1. Observation
2. Research question: a formal statement of an unknown that one would like to understand
3. Research hypothesis: an explanation based on assumptions that makes a testable
prediction
Alternate hypothesis: the statistical hypothesis that the proposed explanation for
observations does have a significant effect
Null hypothesis: the statistical hypothesis that observations result from chance.
The hypothesis of no effect.
4. Methodology: testing of prediction
5. Analysis of data
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Correlation: two variables that vary together predictably
- Scientific theories: hypotheses that make many predictions, have been tested many times
by many different scientists, and that have not been rejected.
1.3 Animal Behaviour Scientists Test Hypotheses to Answer Research Questions About Behaviour
- Research is an ongoing process of discovery
Negative Results and Directional Hypotheses
- Negative results: a situation in which one does not reject the null hypothesis (and thus one
rejects the alternate hypothesis)
The alternate hypothesis does not explain the observed behaviour
- A directional alternate hypothesis predicts specifically how the variable under examination
will affect a particular behaviour (positively or negatively)
- A nondirectional alternate hypothesis usually offers no specific prediction of how the
variable will affect behaviour.
Generating Hypotheses
- Hypotheses are created by scientists to explain some observation.
- Animal behaviour researchers construct hypotheses by considering how natural selection
might have acted on the behaviour to produce a behavioural adaptation.
- Fitness: the relative survivorship and reproductive success (ability to produce viable
offspring) of an individual
Hypotheses Form Mathematical Models
- Equations can be used to clarify arguments and assumptions
- All models about behaviour are based on assumptions about the ecology and evolution of
an individual.
- Mathematical models are based on assumptions
1.4 Anthropomorphic explanations of behaviour assign human emotions to animals and can be
difficult to test
- Anthropomorphism: attributing human motivations, characteristics, or emotions to animals
1.5 Scientific knowledge is generated and communicated to the scientific community via peer-
reviewed research
- Scientific literacy: the ability to evaluate scientific information critically and ascertain its
validity
Literature
- Primary literature: the original source of scientific information, typically peer-reviewed
scientific journals
- Peer review: a process in which editors of scientific journals use experts to help decide
whether to accept or reject a paper for publication
- Secondary literature: a report that summarizes and interprets the primary literature. Often
reported in newspapers, magazines, and books.
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