PSYB65H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 12: Thomas Robert Malthus, Transposable Element, Human Brain

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Published on 17 Nov 2012
University of Toronto
PSYB65 :Human Brain and Behavior
Sayanutha Niranjan
Chapter 12
Evolution of Humans
Evolutionary Psychology: attempts to apply the principles of evolution to human
behavior to figure out what it means to be human.
It is difficult to examine behavior through a fossil however, a male skeleton would
show more fracture and dents, especially on the left side, compared to females
indicating the males did the fighting and were injured by a right-handed
Charles Darwin: assisted by Wallace, published the Origin of Species, which presents
the theory of evolution.
Tells us that all living creatures have been and continue to be the subject to
Evolutionary theory provides important insights into behaviors that also have
been subject to selection pressures
He sailed on the HMS Beagle and travelled to the Galapagos Islands for 5 years
examining the finches there for isolation, different beak size and function.
Using Linnaeus’ classification supported ideas of evolution
William Smith’s idea that the Earth was older than believed and that some
species have changed or gone extinct
Lyell’s idea that geological processes are still continuing, and
Thomas Malthus’s idea that populations grow exponentially until it reaches
carrying capacity they could propose the idea of natural selection.
Evolutionary Theory
1. Linnaeus Classification of organisms based on structure; observed that there
were communalities in structure among related species
2. Lyell & Smith : supported the notion that the earth was far older than previously
thought ; observed fossils and observed that some species change whereas
others extinct and that geological processes are still continuing
3. Thomas Malthus observed that food supplies affect population; survival of the
Historical Theory of Evolution
Variation: the differences in morphology that are characteristic of each individual.
Genetic variation involves differences in traits or alleles (form of a gene), caused
by meiosis, mutation, transposable elements, crossing over, etc.
An individuals phenotype is an expression of the genotype and environment
interacting, however the phenotype can change with the environment and
genotype only with mutation.
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