Final Exam Questions Page 1
1. What is the major trend for Homo?
There is a increase in the size of the brain and a decrease in the
size of the jaw and teeth
2. What is the time scale for Homo? Explain the general trends and
time for each species
Homo rudolfensis 2.5 .8 MA
Homo habilis 2.5 1.5 MA
Homo ergaster 1.7 1.5 MA
Homo erectus 1.8 0.05 MA
Homo floresiensis 18 KA
Homo heidelbergensis 0.7 0.25 MA
Homo neanderthalensis 0.2 0.028 MA
Homo sapiens 0.2 present
H. rudolfensis and H. habilis are the earliest members of the genus
H. erectus first appeared in Asia and not in Africa, and lived a very
H. floresiensis is from a remote island from Indonesia, and
appeared at the same time people were painting caves in other
parts of the world
H. neanderthalensis is thought to be the descendant of H.
heidelbergensis, however, it appears at the same time at H.
sapiens, therefore they are not our ancestor, but our sister taxa
3. Describe Early Homo including the time, site locations, habitat,
and any additional facts
2.5 1.8 MA
o Kobi Fora (East Turkana), Kenya
o Hadar, Ethiopia
o Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania
o Sterkfontein West
Early stone tools (A. garhi or P. robustus) o Possibly, the first recognizable stone tools occur with early
Commonly found in river margin settings (more ecologically
diverse, larger ranges, hunting or scavenging, or more open
o River margin settings access to river resources, more open
country, able to travel long distances, protection due to cover
Found in different stratigraphy, same region and where
Australopithecus used to live
Hunting exploitation of animals for meat, which is not seen with
Australopithecus, probably as a result of larger brains because meat
has more nutrient
Scavenging steering or diverting predators away from fresh meat
so early Homo can steal it
4. What are the general features or characteristics of Early H.
rudolfensis and describe how it differs from Australopithecus?
2.5 MA; Uraha, Malawi
Features long molars, small premolars, deep mandibles,
proportionate anterior teeth
Small premolars compared to Australopithecus, and relatively small
Deep mandibles depth of mandibles can infer between H.
rudolfensis and robust Australopithecus; the size of the mandible is
almost as big as Australopithecus, which others might have a hard
time considering it as early Homo; mandibles in H. rudolfensis are
elongated in cross section and not round like in Australopithecus
H. rudolfensis unable to withstand twisting movements which
5. What are the general features or characteristics of Early H. habilis
and describe how it differs from A. afarensis?
2.5 MA; a palate from Hadar, Ethiopia at 2.3 MA
Features in comparison to A. afarensis the palate, and palate
from Hadar, where H. habilis has a shorter, more reduced prognathism (face is getting smaller), shorter extension from the
maxillary sinus to incisors in habilis but longer extension from
maxillary sinus to incisors in A. afarensis, the molars are relatively
similar, canines are smaller then A. afarensis, reduced mastication,
6. What is the importance of the earliest stone tools from Hadar?
Tools have scars which show that they were chipped off
purposefully, and used for processing food e.g. Animal bones found
with marks on regions where muscles attach, also plants, especially
hard plants in order to tenderize them
The stone tools at Hadar are similar to those Chimpanzees use,
however, researchers believe that stone tools at Hadar are
advanced since they have been re-shaped
7. What are the general features or characteristics of H. rudolfensis
and describe how it differs from Australopithecus?
Features in comparison to Australopithecus tall forehead,
elongated from front to back, and broader from side to side,
considerably larger brain (750-780cc)
General features: huge face, flat face, very orthognathic, teeth
were large (due to analyzing teeth roots) & proportionate, strongly
developed supraorbital tori
8. Compare and Contrast H. rudolfensis and K. platyops, and what do
researchers believe about their relationship?
H. rudolfensis and K. platyops are similar in that they are both
orthognathic, however they are different in terms of brain size,
where H. rudolfensis has larger brain size then K. platyops
Researchers believe that K. platyops that H. rudolfensis are related,
and that K. platyops could be the ancestor of H. rudolfensis
Note there is no correlation between intelligence & brain size
within species, however there is correlation between species
9. What are the general features or characteristics of H. habilis and
describe how it differs from A. afarensis? Features orthognathic, globular at the back, elongated brain case
Similar to the Hadar specimen (palate), however larger brains 530
750 cc, orthognathic, H. habilis maxilla is shorter and vertically
oriented and maxilla of A. afarensis is longer and horizontally
oriented; the smallest H. habilis brain overlaps or correlates with
the largest Australopithecus brain
10. Why is the specimen OH6 important?
Its a partial skeleton, the legs are long and the arms are short and
they both similar to Lucy specimen, theres no duplication of parts,
which implies that its a single individual; Australopithecine in
details; Mosaic evolution not every part of the body evolves at
the same time & rate
11. Using the features of H. habilis, contrast it with
Features larger, reorganized brains, smaller teeth, smaller jaws,
reduced prognathism, basicranial flexion, cranial vault changes
Larger, reorganized brains specific spots enlarged for language
seen in habilis basis for development of language but does not
mean they could speak, probably led to language development
which is also tied to hand manipulation
Smaller back teeth; smaller jaws which are biomechanically less
Basicranial flexion refers to the bottom of the skull where it is more
flexed in early homo and flatter in Australopithecines, probably due
to reduced prognathism
12. Name a site of H. habilis and from and what other specimen is
it similar to?
Sterkfontein West, South Africa the date of this site is 1.5 2MA,
and this site is similar to specimen AL 666-1
13. Compare H. rudolfensis and H. habilis.
H. habilis small brain, small teeth, australopithecine like
skeleton, orthognathic, small face
H. rudolfensis face more later Homo-like, teeth in range of small
Paranthropus, possibly modern skeleton, larger brains (530-750)
14. What are the main points of H. ergaster, H. erectus, H.
heidelbergensis, and archaics of Africa?