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Chapter 4

Psychology 1000 Chapter Notes - Chapter 4: Mendelian Inheritance, Evolutionary Psychology, Extrapolation


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYCH 1000
Professor
Derek Quinlan
Chapter
4

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Psych October 6th, 2015
Chapter 4: Biological Psychology
Darwins First Deduction
Given that:
Organisms have an enormous capacity to overproduce, and
Populations, with few exceptions, remain remarkably stable
We can deduce that:
There is a struggle for survival
Darwins Second Deduction
Given that:
Individuals differ in their characteristics and many of these differences are
heritable
We can deduce that:
Those individuals who possess adaptive characteristics will reproduce more
successfully than those who dont and will pass on these characteristics to
their offspring.
The Theory of Evolution
Those individuals who possess adaptive characteristics will reproduce more
successfully than those who dont and will pass on these characteristics to
their offspring.
This last process is what Darwin meant by Natural Selection.
Evolution can be seen as the accumulation of the changes in the population
due to natural selection
This can happen over the course of a couple generations
But does this apply to behavior?
Darwin believed so:
Behaviour provides vivid and some of the most important examples of
adaptive characteristics and reproductive advantage
Behavioral potentials and predispositions
o Eg: language
o Is language something we learn or is it something we are
programmed to learn?
Darwins Legacy
A lasting impact on the study of brain and behaviour -
If all animals are related:
- so, too, their brains
Extrapolate findings from studies of other species
… so, too, their behaviour
Cross-cultural, species specific behaviour, e.g. emotional expression
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Psych October 6th, 2015
Brain and behaviour can be viewed as evolving on a foundation over time
toward greater complexity…
o e.g. Nervous system, human attachment
We can understand much (not all) of human behavior through a critical
analysis of its evolutionary function/adaptive significance
Evolutionary psychology to come
The publication of Darwins The Origin of Species in 15 had an enormous
effect on ideas about human behaviour
But it was only 50 years later that the rediscovery of the work Mendel on
inheritance led to the development of Mendelian genetics and mechanism
whereby natural selection could operate
Genetics
Mendels Experiments
The transmission of genes and characteristics across…
Expressed and hidden elements are transmitted
Dominant and recessive traits and genes
Phenotype: the expression of the genotypes
Mendels Principles
There are discrete units of cross-generational transmission heredity now
called genes
Each gene makes a unique contribution to what is passed on to offspring
even if that contribution not always visible in phenotype (expressed)
Genes and Behaviour Chromosomes
Chromosomes
The book of blueprints for the entire building 23 pairs in human cell
o Except reproductive cell - gamete
23rd pair is the sex chromosomes X & Y
Constructed of DNA
Genes are sub-section segments of DNA that makes up the chromosome
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