3.987 | Spring 2006 | Undergraduate

Human Origins and Evolution

Lecture Notes

This page presents a set of vocabulary sheets that outline the key terms, concepts and characters covered in lectures, plus assorted handouts. Note that some vocabulary sheets are used for several lectures in a row.

FYI sheets (PDF) (This document has a compiled list of emailed handouts and communications that were circulated to the students before or after lectures as background and/or follow-up information on questions and points raised in specific lectures.)

1-2 Introduction: The Search for Human Ancestors, Approaches to the Study of Human Evolution and an Introduction to Human Osteology

Sheet 1 (PDF)

3-4 Evolutionary Processes and Time Scales    
5 Modern Primates and their Relevance to Understanding Human Origins Sheet 2 (PDF)  
6 Tertiary Higher Primates: Our Pre-Hominid Predecessors Sheet 3 (PDF)  
7-8 Earliest Hominids: The Australopithecines and Affines Sheet 4 (PDF)  
9 Early Hominids - Variations and Taxonomy - Presentations

Sheet 4 (cont.)

Sheet 5 (PDF)

10 Hominid/Human Origins: Hypotheses and Speculation    
11 Early Homo: How Should Homo Be Defined? Sheet 6 (PDF)  
12-13 The Archaeology of the Early Hominids I: Olduvai Gorge and Koobi Fora Sheet 7 (PDF)

Handout 1 (PDF)

14 The Archaeology of the Early Hominids II: Interpreting Early Hominid Behavior and Current Research Directions Sheet 7 (cont.)  
15 Midterm Exam    
16 Homo ergaster and erectus: Emerging Modern Morphology Sheet 8 (PDF) Handout 2 (PDF)
17 Slowly Emerging Modern Behaviors: Early Stone Age / Lower Palaeolithic Age Sheet 8 (cont.)

Handout 2 (cont.)

Handout 3 (PDF)

18 Homo heidelbergensis and neanderthalensis or Early “Archaic” H. sapiens? Sheet 9 (PDF)  
19-20 “Archaics”: Not Quite Us Physically, Not Quite Us Mentally

Sheet 9 (cont.)

Sheet 10 (PDF)

Handout 4 (PDF)
21 Origin of Modern Homo sapiens : Morphology and Genetic Evidence Sheet 11 (PDF)

Handout 5 (PDF)

Handout 6 (PDF)

22-23 Modern Homo sapiens I: Cultural Diversity Becomes the Norm

Sheet 11 (cont.)

Sheet 12 (PDF)

24 Modern Homo sapiens II: To the Threshold of Civilization Sheet 13 (PDF)  
25-26 Modern Human Diversity: Distribution, Morphological Variation and “Races” Sheet 13 (cont.)  

Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2006
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Notes
Written Assignments