assignment 3 becoming human 1


NOTE FROM PROFESSOR – Error in the Becoming Human Video


A few students have pointed out that there is about a 5 min glitch in the Part 2 of the Becoming Human Video. Unfortunately this is the newest link that I have, because the previous one I used was pulled. The video stops on one still for about 5 minutes, starting around 16 minutes in, if you sat forward to about 21 minutes, it will start back up again. However, there is some info that you might not be able to answer in the video questions assignment. Some students mentioned they missed riding the answers to questions 2 and 3, so here they are just in case:

  1. Why were stone tools important?

Stone tools are important because it marks a change in the survival in our ancestors, and the development of technology. The tools of H. erectus required more skill to construct and could be used for a wider range of functions vs. the oldowan stone flakes and chopper cores.

  1. What are some of the costs of a larger brain?

Some costs of a larger brain include the need for more calories in order to support it, and this the need for more food in order to sustain itself.


Becoming Human Part 1: Film Questions (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

Watch the video and answer the following questions.

  1. What genus and species is “Selam”? Where was she discovered? How old was she?
  2. How did Donald Johansen know that “Lucy” walked bipedally (upright)?
  3. What was the environment like in Africa before the time of “Selam”? How do the researchers know?
  4. How much more energy is exerted by a chimpanzee walking quadrapedally, than a hominid walking bipedally?
  5. Based on the molecular clock, when did we share a last common ancestor with Chimpanzees?
  6. How many expeditions did it take for researchers to find the fossil of Sahelanthropus tchadensis?
  7. Why is the study of the position of the lunate sulcus important to human evolutionary studies?
  8. What species made the first stone tools? How long ago did this occur?
  9. What were these stone tools used for?
  10. What might have driven the evolution of multiple species in Africa over 2 million years ago?

Becoming Human Part 2: Birth of Humanity (Links to an external site.)

  1. What is the Broca’s area in the brain?
  1. Why were stone tools important?
  1. What are some of the costs of a larger brain?
  1. What is “persistence hunting”? What did it allow humans to do?
  1. What is one theory why Homo erectus has smaller teeth, a much smaller gut, and became more social?
  1. What was a key factor in causing humans to leave Africa?
  1. What is the molecular clock and why is it important?


Please and Thank You