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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Postgraduate (History, Classics and Archaeology)

Postgraduate Course: Human Evolution (PGHC11080)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe course provides an overview of human biological and cultural evolution from the first hominins to the emergence of our own species, Homo sapiens, using evidence provided by archaeology, molecular biology, and biological and social anthropology.
Course description The aim of the course is to provide students with a greater awareness of where we came from, and how we have developed physically and culturally over the past seven million years. Topics covered include: how scientists study human evolution; climate change and evolution; primate origins; the earliest hominins and the origins of bipedalism; evolution of the brain, intelligence and language; reconstructing diet and behaviour; the origin and global expansion of modern humans.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Students MUST NOT also be taking Human Origins (ARCA10003)
Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  7
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 33, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 163 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework:
3,000 word essay, excluding bibliography (70%)
1,000 word encyclopaedia entry (30%)
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. show command of core concepts in human evolution
  2. show an in depth understanding of hominin skeletal morphology
  3. demonstrate an ability to read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship on human origins
  4. demonstrate an ability to sustain scholarly arguments in written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence
  5. demonstrate independence of mind and initiative, and intellectual integrity and maturity
Reading List
Arsuaga, J.L. and Martinez, I. 2006. The Chosen Species: The Long March of Human Evolution. Oxford: Blackwell.

Cartmill, M. & Smith, F.H. 2009. The Human Lineage. Hoboken, Wiley-Blackwell.

Dinnis, R. & Stringer, C. 2014. Britain: one million years of the human story. London, Natural History Museum

Harris, E.E. 2015. Ancestors in our Genome. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Jobling, M.A., Hurles, M. and Tyler-Smith, C. 2004. Human Evolutionary Genetics: Origins, Peoples and Disease. New York: Garland.

Stringer, C. 2012. The Origin of Our Species. Harmondsworth, Penguin.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Special Arrangements Jointly taught with Human Origins (ARCA10003)
KeywordsHuman Evolution
Course organiserDr Catriona Pickard
Tel: (0131 6)50 2372
Course secretaryMrs Shannon McMillan
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