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PSYC 3100- Midterm Exam Guide - Comprehensive Notes for the exam ( 26 pages long!)


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 3100
Professor
Pat Barclay
Study Guide
Midterm

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U of G
PSYC 3100
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE

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Evolutionary Psychology
Sept. 8th, 17
LECTURE 1
Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution –
Theodosius Dobzhansky
o Dalmatian picture example
o A theory unites the facts and helps make sense of the bigger picture
Evolutionary theory…
o Unites biological sciences
o Makes sense of disparate facts in nature
o Is extraordinarily powerful at predicting new findings
What is evolutionary psychology
o Use of evolutionary theory as the foundation for studying brains and
behaviour
o Link between the natural sciences and psychology (&ideally with the
social sciences too!)
o Draws from biology, zoology, psych, anthropology, economics)
o NOT a sub discipline of psychology it’s a paradigm for ALL of
psychology
Different way of approaching
o Evolutionary theory unites the old psychological findings and helps
predict new ones
o Nothing in psychology or culture makes sense except in the light of
evolution
What topics are covered in this course?
o Kinship
o Cooperation
o Mating
o Parenting
o Individuality
o Conflict
o Uniquely Human Behaviours
*
When writing quizzes be wary of using the following words: species, conscious,
culture
These words correlated with misunderstanding the concept
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Evolutionary Psychology
Sept. 11th, 17
LECTURE 2
Evolution & Natural Selection
Basic Definition
Evolution: change in gene frequency
o No mention of progress; no better or worse there is just change
Genotype: genetic makeup of an organism
o What genes it has
Phenotype: Organism’s observable characteristics
o Everything that you see, smell, feel about an organism
o Includes body shape, developmental pathways (ex. what stage teeth
grow), behaviour, products of behaviour (ex. what kind of web
different spiders draw)
GENOTYPE + ENVIRONMENT PHENOTYPE
o Genotype and environment interact to create the phenotype
Gene’s Eye Perspective
Genes get passed on
Genes are replications they make copies of themselves
o One way for genes to be replicated is to build something around it to
replicate it this is called a vehicle: something genes build in order
to help spread the genes
Vehicle is the body
The genes that are helpful to our survival are more likely to replicate
Build a good body (vehicle):
o Build a good vehicle that is good for the environment it is in
o Extract information from environment
o Help its body reproduce
Misinterpretations of Gene Language
Ex. A gene for X
o What this really means is … A gene or set of genes that code for
proteins that act as part of a developmental pathway that given a
relatively normal rearing environment, builds (possibly, with crucial
information from the environment) a brain or body in which X is more
likely to occur than would have been if organism possessed an
alternative gene(s) at those loci
Ex 2. A gene or set of genes wants X
o X is a good strategy and we should therefore expect to see genes that
cause X; genes that do not do X will be at a disadvantage
o If a gene wants to spread, then X is what it should do
Ex. 3. A gene or organism should do X
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