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Chapter 13 Reading Assignment

5 sentence minimum per response.

Before reading the chapter

1. What is your understanding of race and human variation? Do you think we are all the same or do you think there are difference between humans (not including sex)? Where did you learn about this – school, social media, friends, etc. ?

After reading the chapter

2. How is the genetic variation of the human species distributed worldwide?

3. The book mainly focuses on traits like skin color and lactose intolerance. What about the brain? Could mental attributes (say something like intelligence) also differ from human population to human population? If you don’t think so, explain why you think that evolution didn’t impact the brain (the brain is part of the body after all).

Chapter 14 Reading Assignmentt

5 Sentence minimum per response.

1. Detail at least two examples of how natural selection has influenced human variation. Specifically, what was the selective pressure that may have led to a preference for a specific trait and how is that trait related to an increased level of fitness?

2. What are some of the risks associated with pregnancy at high altitude? Compare and contrast the various genetic mutations of the indigenous Tibetan, Andean, and Ethiopian high-altitude populations. In your answer, specifically address the issue of pregnancy at high altitudes.

3. What is the relationship between the sickle cell mutation and the Plasmodium parasite? Would having the HbSA genotype still be advantageous in a region where such parasites are not common? Why or why not?


Application Assignment #7


Please watch the video above and answer the following questions. For full credit, your answers must be a minimum of 5 sentences and must show clarity in how your reached your conclusion.


Respond to two other students – minimum 3 sentences

1. What are your thoughts on genetic engineering? For example, would you support technology that would allow use to genetically modify our offspring? Not only for genetic disorder but perhaps just for cosmetic (a certain color of eyes) or mental advantages (high IQ genes).

2. What are your thoughts on this CRISPR technology? Do you think it will be beneficial or harmful to our species? Explain your answer.

3. In the future, if we are able to delete or add genes in our genome, how do you think this would affect natural selection/evolution? Explain your answer.

4. What are some potential ethical implication that are engendered by this? Provide some hypothetical examples and explain your answer.

Application Assignment #8

For this assignment, you will be playing this simulated game (https://ncase.me/trust/ ) that reflects game theory in action. Regardless of the final topics in my class, I usually like to end with an assignment that has the potential to showcase how human behavior is influenced by culture and biology.

For full credit, please provide a minimum of 5 sentences for each answer and make sure to provide screenshots as requested.

Screenshots (please submit as attachments or in text entry if possible)

1. Screen shot of your first score (after the first round of playing).

2. Screen shot of “the three things we need for the evolution of trust” page.


1. Explain how and why “copycat” will usually get the highest scores. Explain what parameters cause “copycat” to not always win.

2. What are some cultural examples that you can think of (in real life) that are based on the parameters causing distrust in the game?

3. Using the “three things needed for the evolution of trust” – what do you propose we can change in how humans can engage with each other in order to promote trust?

4. How does biology play in role in this? Why and how would certain genes increase/decrease based on this model/game? How do these genes potentially impact human behavior?


Final Exam

You must answer both questions below. They must be in an essay format – three paragraphs minimum per each question; five sentence minimum per each paragraph.

Just so there are no confusions, there are only two questions below (1 & 2), each question is broken up in order to better organize it.

1. Please answer the following questions in an essay style format

Explain what the processes of natural and sexual selection are. Provide examples.

Using natural selection as a model, explain how and why our ancestors became bipedal. Make sure to discuss the different hypotheses and the changing environment. Which hypothesis or combination of hypotheses do you think provide the best explanation? Why?

Please make sure to use support from videos, articles, and/or your book. Also, make sure not to imply agency.

  1. Please answer the following questions in an essay style format

Define As discussed in class, what are the differences between “biological variation between modern human populations” and the “cultural concept of race.

Please provide examples of each concept. Why would you argue it is important to understand the distinction?

Please make sure you define terms. Please provide support from lecture