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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Geoffrey C. Kushnick
BIOL 108
Seattle Campus

Evolution and Human Behavior

Introduction to evolution by natural selection, examining the light it can throw on human biology and behavior in such areas as the nature of sex differences, sexual conflict, and conflict between parents and children. Does not fulfill major requirements. Offered: jointly with BIO A 100.

Class description

In this course, we will examine human behavior from an evolutionary perspective, covering topics related to the role of natural selection, sexual selection, and kin selection in shaping human behavioral adaptations for mating and parenting, diet and consumerism, cooperation and conflict, and other things. We will critically evaluate the major evolutionary approaches used, including evolutionary psychology and human behavioral ecology. We will trace the historical development of the nature-nurture debate, including eugenics and the “sociobiology controversy.”

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

These topics will be explored in lectures, readings, documentary films, and case studies. Assessment is via exam, short assignments, and in-class participation.

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

Participation, in-class activities, take-home assignments, and exams.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Geoffrey C. Kushnick
Date: 10/26/2013