Winter '00 Course Guide

Courses in Biological Anthropology (Division 318)

Winter Term, 2000 (January 5 April 26, 2000)

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Bio. Anthro. 161. Introduction to Biological Anthropology.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): John Mitani (mitani@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: (4). (NS). (BS). Does not count toward anthropology concentration requirements.

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

How have humans evolved? This class seeks to answer this enduring question. The course will be divided into three parts. We will begin by considering evolutionary theory and examining how evolution produces adaptations and creates new species. This section will conclude by outlining how evolution has shaped the behavior of our closest living relatives, the nonhuman primates. The second part of the class will be devoted to investigating the human fossil record and tracing the physical and behavioral evolution of our species. The course will conclude by asking how evolution has affected contemporary human behavior. The emphasis throughout will be on the processes that have shaped human evolution and how these have produced who we are. The class includes three lectures plus one discussion/lab meeting per week. Grades will be based on two midterms and one final.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 2 Waitlist Code: 1

Bio. Anthro. 361. Biology, Society, and Culture.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Eugene Harris (eeharris@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Sophomore standing. (4). (NS). (BS).

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

This course will focus on both biological and cultural evolution within humans. It will also explore the origins of culture within the primates including discussion of origins of language, tool use, and social traditions. Topics in human evolution will include technological features of the Old and New Stone ages, the use of fire and preparation of food, hunter-gatherer technologies, the acquisition of language, innovations in art forms, symbolic adornment, burial practices, and cannibalism. We will also discuss how our own culture can color the way we interpret the evidence of our evolution. Examples from the history of 19th and 20th century evolutionary and anthropological thought and research will be discussed. Topics to be covered include the interpretation of race, eugenics, political biopolicies, and story telling in human evolutionary studies.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

Bio. Anthro. 362. Problems of Race.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): C. Loring Brace (clbrace@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Sophomore standing. (3). (NS). (BS).

R&E

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

The subject matter covered in this course is the same as that covered in Anthropology 360. Anthropology 362 addresses itself to two main problem areas where race is concerned: (1) the common concept of race has an inadequate foundation in biology and must be dispensed with before we can make sense out of the very real aspects of human biological variation. This portion of the course treats the dimensions of human biological differences that can be traced according to selective force distributions and their changes through time. These will be contrasted with the biological traits that show regional clustering but which have no adaptive value and cannot therefore be hierarchically arranged. (2) If the common concept of race has an inadequate biological base, how did we get stuck with our generally held assumptions when it would appear that they owe more to folklore than to biology? This portion of the course deals principally with the history of the race concept. All the material covered by the course will be dealt with in lecture. Supplementary readings will be suggested from time to time, along with specific sections in the assigned texts. Texts: C.L. Brace, The Stages of Human Evolution 5th ed. will be available at Michigan Book and Supply at 317 South State. Lecture outlines (syllabus) and C.L. Brace, Race is a Four Letter Word will be available at Grade A Notes on the second floor of Ulrich's Bookstore at 549 East University.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 2 Waitlist Code: 3, 4

Bio. Anthro. 364. Nutrition and Evolution.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Roberto Frisancho (arfrisan@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Sophomore standing. (4). (NS). (BS).

Credits: (4; 3 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

Examines:

  1. the physiology of nutrient utilization from carbohydrates to fats and proteins;
  2. the role of diet on the evolution of the digestive system and brain size of non-human and human primates;
  3. the archaeological evidence about the evolutionary roots of human diet;
  4. the ecological basis of the hunter-gatherer's diet;
  5. the dietary habits of western-style societies;
  6. cultural variability and dietary preferences;
  7. cannibalism;
  8. lactose intolerance; and
  9. accommodation to dietary restriction during development and adulthood.

The course involves hands-on experience in measurements of nutritional status that includes anthropometric measurements of body size and body composition, metabolic rate, etc.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

Bio. Anthro. 365. Human Evolution.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Milford Wolpoff (wolpoff@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Sophomore standing. High school biology is assumed. (4). (NS). (BS).

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

Human evolution has been a biological process with both social and physical aspects. Through lectures, discussion section, laboratory, and reading, the interrelated process of behavioral and physical change is outlined for humans and their ancestors. Emphasis is placed on evolutionary mechanisms, and context is provided through an understanding of the pre-human primates. The human story begins with origins and the appearance of unique human features such as bipedality, the loss of cutting canines, the appearance of continual sexual receptivity, births requiring midwifery, and the development of complex social interactions. An early adaptive shift sets the stage for the subsequent evolution of intelligence, technology, and the changes in physical form that are the consequence of the unique feedback system involving cultural and biological change. The "Eve" theory and other ideas about the origin of modern humanity and human races, and their development and relationships, are discussed in this context. Class participation and discussion are emphasized, and there is a required discussion/laboratory section for elaboration of lecture topics and supervised hands-on experience with primate skeletal material and replicas of human fossils. Student evaluations are based on two examinations, laboratory quizzes, and a laboratory exam.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 2 Waitlist Code: 3

Bio. Anthro. 399. Honors in Biological Anthropology and Anthropology/Zoology.

Prerequisites & Distribution: Senior standing and permission of instructor. (3). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for credit twice.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

Seniors who choose to enter the Honors program undertake a senior project under the supervision of a member of the faculty or other qualified person. Most often this takes the form of an original paper of greater scope than is possible in an ordinary term paper, and it gives the student experience in conducting and writing up his or her own research. Students who are interested in joining the senior Honors program should consult with the departmental Honors advisor for biological anthropology. Previous participation in the College Honors Program is not a prerequisite for joining the senior Honors program.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

Bio. Anthro. 450. Molecular Anthropology.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Andrew Merriwether (andym@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: At least one anthropology or biology course. (3). (Excl). (BS).

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~andym/ANTH_450_Sylabus.html

This course will cover, in detail, how to collect various kinds of molecular data. This includes polymorphisms involving PCR amplicon size, RFLP's, STR's, and DNA nucleotide and protein amino acid sequences. The theories behind these methods will be discussed so that students will understand the nature of the data being collected. This is the prerequisite course for the Molecular Anthropology Lab course, and provides the necessary background theory to learn how to actually do these procedures in lab. The second third of the course involves analysis of molecular data, and encompasses basic population genetic techniques for the analysis of molecular genetic data. These include computation of genetic distance, heterogeneity, and Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium from actual data. The final third of the course will involve either presentations of critiques and explanations of published works or novel analyses of data acquired from the literature or from online databases (Genbank, GDB, etc.). The course pack will involve readings from the field.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 1 Waitlist Code: 3

Bio. Anthro. 452. Population Genetics and Anthropology.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Eugene Harris (eeharris@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One course in anthropology or biology. No credit granted to those who have completed Biology 490. (4). (Excl). (BS).

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

This course will cover a broad range of topics in population genetics theory and phylogenetic theory as they relate to human and primate evolution. Topics in population genetics will include discussion of the neutral theory of molecular evolution, natural selection, coalescent theory, and gene trees within species trees. We will discuss how population genetics can reveal important information about historical demography including population subdivision, bottlenecks, and populations' growth, and speciation events. Populations can also be approached at higher levels as in the study of the evolutionary relationships between and among species and genera. Over the past decade, we have seen the application of genetic information, mostly DNA sequences, to clarifying species relationships. We will discuss the various methods used to reconstruct evolutionary trees. These include distance methods, methods based on the principle of parsimony, and maximum likelihood. In many cases, the trees built based on new molecular data and those built using morphological data are in agreement. However, for some groups of animals, as within the large-bodied and terrestrial Old World monkeys, this is not the case. We will discuss how apparently incongruent results such as these might be resolved. Particular topics that will be discussed in the class are modern human origins and diversity, evolutionary relationships among the great apes and humans, relationships within the New and Old World monkey groups, and in addition some topics on primate conservation genetics.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

Bio. Anthro. 471. Undergraduate Reading and Research in Anthropology.

Prerequisites & Distribution: Permission of instructor. (1-3). (Excl). A maximum of three credits of independent reading may be included in a concentration plan in anthropology. (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for a total of six credits.

Credits: (1-3).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

Laboratory training and work in the techniques used in various aspects of research in biological anthropology.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

Bio. Anthro. 566. Laboratory in Human Osteology.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Rachel Caspari (rcaspari@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Permission of instructor. (4). (Excl). (BS).

Credits: (4; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

The course is concerned with the identification and interpretation of human skeletal remains. Emphasis is placed on both the individual and populational levels of interpretation. Topics include the basic biology of normal bone, pathology, and variation in form. Identification and reconstruction of fragmentary materials as well as reconstruction of populational characteristics (age, sex, life history data, metric description) are covered. It is specifically designed for archaeologists and biological anthropologists but also would be of use to pre-dental and pre-medical students who will take gross anatomy in the future. The course is limited to 30 students. Four scheduled hours, and additional laboratory time. Permission of instructor is required.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: See TA to get Override

Bio. Anthro. 570. Biological Anthropology: An Overview.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): C. Loring Brace (clbrace@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: An undergraduate concentration in anthropology or its equivalent. (3). (Excl). (BS).

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

This course is conceived as a summary of what a professional anthropologist should understand concerning those aspects of basic biology that have to be taken into account to make sense out of the evidence for human evolution and of the record of biological variation visible in living human populations. Human evolution is treated using the perspective of evolutionary theory and taking into account both classical and molecular genetics. The contributions made by the study of both living and fossil non-human primates is also considered. The trajectory of human evolution is illustrated by a consideration of the human fossil record in light of how human activities changed the nature of selective forces and contributed to the development of the biological changes visible through time. The emergence of modern "racial" differences is treated in terms of both adaptive and non-adaptive aspects of biological variation. It will conclude with a survey of the reasons why the concept of "race" accepted by the public at large is so unrelated to what we know about the biology of human variation. In addition to written midterm and final exams, a term paper is required on a topic to be set in consultation with the instructor.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

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