HONORS 232 - Honors Core in Natural Science
Fall 2020, Section 001 - Your Inner Ape
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  Online (see other Sections below)
Subject: Honors Program (HONORS)
Department: LSA Honors
See additional student enrollment and course instructor information to guide you in your decision making.

Details

Credits:
4
Requirements & Distribution:
BS, NS
Other:
Honors
BS:
This course counts toward the 60 credits of math/science required for a Bachelor of Science degree.
Repeatability:
May be elected twice for credit. May be elected more than once in the same term.
Primary Instructor:

Description

Some seven million years ago, one lineage of African apes took a divergent path that led to the evolution of humans. But just how different are we from other apes? This class examines the behavioral, anatomical and genetic similarities and differences between humans and our closest relatives, the apes, in order to explore the boundaries of human uniqueness. The course will be divided into four sections, each of which will incorporate hands-on classroom exercises exposing students to the techniques used by evolutionary anthropologists and biologists to understand human evolution from a comparative perspective.

The first unit of the course will review the basic biology and geographic distribution of living apes, and introduce the techniques used to understand evolutionary processes. Some of the questions to be addressed include:

  • Who are the living apes, and where do they live?
  • What distinguishes apes from other primates and other mammals?
  • What is the comparative method?
  • How can we study “unique” traits, such as language, that only occur in one living species?

The second part of the class will be devoted to investigating the similarities and differences between humans and apes in terms of behavior. Some of the questions to be addressed include:

  • How do apes mate and raise their offspring, and how do these strategies compare to those of humans?
  • Do apes have morality?
  • What is the theory of mind, and how is it linked to cognition?
  • How do ape and human communication compare? Do apes use language?

The third unit will use the comparative method and the fossil record to reconstruct how distinctive human anatomical and physiological complexes evolved. Some of the questions to be addressed include:

  • What do apes eat, and how are ape diets relevant for understanding the evolution of human diets?
  • How and why did bipedalism evolve?
  • What aspects of the hand and forearm make tool use possible?
  • How do human brains compare to ape brains, and can these differences explain cognitive differences?

The course will conclude by exploring how both genes and environment play a role in explaining human uniqueness. Some of the questions to be addressed include:

  • How can genetic data be used to answer questions about our present and our past, and what genes are distinct to humans?
  • Why is human genetic variation reduced compared to apes?
  • How have environmental changes influenced the divergence of humans?
  • How does environment affect ape and human development?

Course Requirements:

Learning Mode: The weekly lectures for this course will be delivered synchronously but recorded. We will also have weekly discussion sessions that will be synchronous but recorded. Students will have the option of attending approximately one-half of the sections in person.

Course Testing/Assessment: Testing for this course will be asynchronous and will consist of short answer and essay questions that will be submitted via Canvas during a designated time frame.

Intended Audience:

First and second year students in LSA Honors Program

This course welcomes entirely online participation. While there will be optional in-person components, no part of this course requires you to be on campus or present in-person.

Class Format:

Instruction Mode: All lectures will be given online, synchronously but recorded. Sections will be synchronous, with approximately one-half in person and one-half online, and all will be recorded. Our preference is for some sections to be (optionally) in person as they will involved hands-on learning with ape, human and fossil cast specimens. However, as needed, in person sections will be adapted to be delivered online.

Schedule

HONORS 232 - Honors Core in Natural Science
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 Online
24258
Open
39
 
-
TuTh 1:00PM - 2:30PM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.
002 (DIS)
 Online
24266
Open
1
1LSA HONORS Y1 or Y2 or TRY1
-
Tu 9:00AM - 10:00AM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.
003 (DIS)
 Online
24267
Open
2
2LSA HONORS Y1 or Y2 or TRY1
-
Tu 12:00PM - 1:00PM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.
004 (DIS)
 Online
24268
Open
12
12LSA HONORS Y1 or Y2 or TRY1
-
F 12:00PM - 1:00PM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.
005 (DIS)
 Online
24269
Open
12
12LSA HONORS Y1 or Y2 or TRY1
-
F 10:00AM - 11:00AM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.
006 (DIS)
 Online
29463
Open
9
9LSA HONORS Y1 or Y2 or TRY1
-
F 11:00AM - 12:00PM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.
007 (DIS)
 Online
29464
Open
3
3LSA HONORS Y1 or Y2 or TRY1
-
F 1:00PM - 2:00PM
Note: Students are auto-enrolled in lecture 001 when they elect one of discussions 002-007.

Textbooks/Other Materials

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Click the button below to view and buy textbooks for HONORS 232.001

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Syllabi

Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

Click the button below to view historical syllabi for HONORS 232 (UM login required)

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CourseProfile (Atlas)

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CourseProfile (Atlas)