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Anthropology 101
Introduction to Anthropology: Human Origins

Spring, 2013
MW 10:00-10:50, AUP 170

Neanderthal cartoon
  Instructor: Dr. Bettina Arnold
Office: SAB 229 (Archaeology Lab)
Office Hours: M 3:00-5:00pm, or by appointment: x4583 or x4175

Teaching Assistants: TA OFFICE: SAB G36, x4019
Lara Ghisleni, Office Hours: or by appointment; e-mail:
Lindsey Helms , Office Hours: T 8:00-10:00am or by appointment; e-mail:

  Text: Larsen, Clark Spencer Our Origins: Discovering Physical Anthropology 2nd Edition (2013). W.W. Norton. UWM Bookstore: $84.00, Two copies on 2 hour UWM Library Reserve.

Lab Manual: Available on UWM Library e-Reserve (NOT on D2L!)
Off-campus Computer Access:

Print out/download all materials and bring to each discussion section meeting in a binder or in electronic form!


Other Human Evolution web sites

arrowThe Human Origins Program at the Smithsonian Institution.
arrowPBS NOVA Evolution-Humans.  View NOVA's Evolution, including the Human Evolution episode
arrowIndiana University - Human Origins.  Links to topics on human evolution
arrowInstitute of Human Origins.
arrowTalk Origins Archive.  Links Section

  Course Description:
This course is an introduction to the evolutionary development of humans, both physically and culturally. Major topics include the concept of evolution, biological relationships between humans and other primates, primate behavior and taxonomy, the fossil record of human evolution, and the basic methods employed by anthropologists and archaeologists in the study of prehistoric human biological and cultural development. The course focus is on paleoanthropology, the science that combines fossil and cultural evidence of human evolution.

This class satisfies Social Science (SS) GER because it will teach you to a) recognize and analyze the evidence and processes involved in human biological and social development and b) identify and apply physical, cultural anthropological and archaeological methods to the study of human biological and social development. After taking this course, you will have a solid understanding of basic evolutionary principles; be able to identify the fundamental traits that make us all "human"; understand how and why human populations differ biologically; and have a greater appreciation for our place in the natural world.

One of the aspects of this course that will be assessed for SS GER is the Take-home Essays, which require you to demonstrate the ability to identify, synthesize, and critically evaluate and derive conclusions from multiple lines of scientific evidence related to primate behavior.

The rubric used to assess this aspect of the course involves a 0-1-2 scoring of your ability to link specific anthropological evidence presented in the articles to your responses to the essays questions related to non-human primate behavior:

Score = 0 If you fail to identify relevant and/or accurate data
Score = 1 If you identify relevant and accurate data but fail to explain clearly how they support your response to the essay questions.
Score = 2 If you identify relevant data and explain clearly how they support your response to the essay questions.

Tests, Quizzes, Take-Home Exercises and Grading:
Midterm (100 points) & Final (100 points)
Take-home essays (35 points) & Three quizzes (20 points each) (95 points)
Lab Section Attendance (5 points)
TOTAL: 300 points.

Study guides: Distributed at least two weeks before each exam; NOT comprehensive, and NOT a substitute for keeping up with lectures and reading throughout the semester. There is a map component on the final exam, so be sure you can locate important sites in space as well as time.

Attendance and participation: Both are essential for a passing grade. You must notify the instructor and/or your TA in advance if you are unable to attend a lecture or section. There are no section make-ups without advance notice. If you miss class because of illness, e-mail the instructor & your TA before class. No lecture materials will be posted; if you miss class, it is your responsibility to obtain notes from another student.

Late assignment penalties: Assignment due dates for take-home exercises are listed on the syllabus. Late assignments will be docked one full point per day, and penalties are non-negotiable unless you have cleared them with the instructor before the due date or you have a valid medical excuse. This course requires a considerable amount of input on your part, and your grade will reflect your attendance record.

Extra Credit (Optional): Complete Primate Extra Credit Exercise (Lab Manual Primate Section) at the Milwaukee County Zoo. Max. 5 points. May be completed and turned in at any time between the Midterm Exam and the last class on May 8.

University and Departmental Policies: Contact me if you have questions or concerns.

Week by Week: Assignments and Reading in Essentials of Physical Anthropology:

Hint: Try to stay ahead of the reading in order to be prepared for discussion and in-class exercises and quizzes. Life will be much easier if you manage to do this!

January 23-25 Introduction Chapter 1

January 28-30 Historic Context/Genetics I Chapter 2-3
In Lab Section: Human Skeleton Review
arrowHuman Osteology.  Excellent primer on the human skeleton
arrowThe Human Skull.  Illustrations of the human skull

February 4 - 6 Genetics II Chapter 4 and 5

arrowMendel Web.  
arrowThe Alfred Russel Wallace Page.  
arrowCharles Darwin: Origin of Species, Voyage of the Beagle.  
arrowDarwin/Evolution in Museums .  Science Friday, Nov. 18, 2005.
arrowUniversity of Arizona - The Biology Project.  Human Biology problem set
arrowRutgers University.  Morgan: A genetics tutorial
arrowHow and Why New Species Form.  Science Friday, Oct. 4, 1996.
arrowGenetics Update.
arrowPennsylvania Intelligent Design Trial.  Science Friday, Dec. 23, 2005.

February 11 -13 Living Primates I Chapter 6
In Lab Section: Human Skeleton Quiz 1 (20 points)
arrowPrimate Info Net.  Excellent source for information on Primates
arrowAfrican Primates At Home.  Fun site with audio files, maps and information on African Primates

February 18 - 20 Living Primates II Chapter 7

February 25 - 27 Early Hominids I Chapter 8
Due in class: February 27 Essay Take-Home! (35 points)

March 4 - 6 Early Hominids II Chapter 9
arrowEvolution Research News.  Links to evolutionary biology news
arrowEvolution: Humans: Humankind.  PBS Web Site
arrowRichard Leakey Reflects On Human Past—And Future.  Science Friday, April 15, 2011.
arrowThe Leakey Legacy.  Science Friday, Dec. 20, 1996.
arrowRemembering Mary Leakey.  McNeil-Lehrer NewsHour, Dec. 9, 1996.

March 11 - 13 Early Hominids II (cont.) Chapter 10

March 13 in Class Midterm Exam! (100 pts)

March 18 - 24 SPRING BREAK

arrowIn Search of Neanderthals. A site devoted to Neanderthals
arrowBBC Human Evolution Site.   This section devoted to Neanderthals
arrowA New Human Relative, From a DNA Sample?.  Science Friday, March 26, 2010.
arrowEarly Human Ancestors.  Science Friday, May 30, 1997.
arrowAn Earlier Departure Out Of Africa?.  Science Friday, January 28th, 2011.
arrowMan's Family Tree.  McNeil-Lehrer NewsHour, Dec. 13, 1996.
arrowOrigins of Language.  Science Friday, Sept. 15, 1995.

March 25 - 27 Genus Homo I Chapter 11

April 1 - 3 Genus Homo I (cont.) Chapter 11

April 8 - 10 Genus Homo II Chapter 11
In Lab Section: Genus Homo Quiz 2 (20 points)

arrowA Decorated Paleolithic Cave in the Ardèche Region of France.  Recent Discoveries in Chauvet Cave
arrowNew Human Species - Homo floresiensis.  Science Friday, Oct. 29, 2004.
arrowHomo floresiensis.  Updated information
arrowFirst Humans in the Americas.  Science Friday, Feb. 28, 1997.
arrowHuman Origins Update.  Science Friday, May 10, 1996.
arrowAre Humans Still Evolving?.  Science Friday, October 23, 2009.
arrowStudy Suggests Earlier Meat Eating In Hominids.  Science Friday, August 13, 2010.
arrowThe Paleolithic Diet Page.  Interesting links on evolution and human dietary needs

April 15 - 17 Genus Homo III Chapter 12

April 22 - 24 Upper Paleolithic Adaptations I Chapter 12

April 29 - May 1 Upper Paleolithic Adaptations II Chapter 12
In Lab Section: Upper Paleolithic Quiz 3 (20 points)

May 6 - 8 Future Adaptations
Final Exam Review in All Sections!!
Chapter 13

Friday, May 17 Final Exam! (100 points) 10:00 - 12:00 noon

Academic Misconduct: Please read carefully! Cheating and plagiarism are serious offenses and will not be tolerated. Any student who engages in academic misconduct as defined below will receive an F in this course.

Student academic misconduct procedures are specified in Chapter UWS 14 and the UWM implementation provisions (Faculty Document 1686) as follows:

Academic misconduct is an act in which a student seeks to claim credit for the work or efforts of another without authorization or citation, uses unauthorized materials or fabricated data in any academic exercise, forges or falsifies academic documents or records, intentionally impedes or damages the academic work of others, engages in conduct aimed at making false representation of a student's academic performance, or assists other students in any of these acts.

Prohibited conduct includes cheating on an examination; collaborating with others in work to be presented, contrary to the stated rules of the course; submitting a paper or assignment as one's own work when a part or all of the paper or assignment is the work of another; submitting a paper or assignment that contains ideas or research of others without appropriately identifying the sources of those ideas; stealing examinations or course materials; submitting, if contrary to the rules of a course, work previously presented in another course; tampering with the laboratory experiment or computer program of another student; knowingly and intentionally assisting another student in any of the above, including assistance in an arrangement whereby any work, classroom performance, examination or other activity is submitted or performed by a person other than the student under whose name the work is submitted or performed.

UWM Writing Center
The Writing Center welcomes writers from any discipline, at all skill levels, inexperienced through advanced, freshmen through graduate students. No matter where students are in a task, whether still exploring a reading, brainstorming, drafting or revising, they can benefit from talking to one of the Writing Center's well-qualified and trained tutors. Consider using the Writing Center for the Primate Take-Home Exercise due in this class on February 27!

The Writing Center is located in Curtin 382.
Make appointments online 24/7: www.writingcenter.uwm.edua>, call 229-4339 or walk in.

© 2000 Bettina Arnold, Dept. of Anthropology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Last Updated: January 20, 2013