Principles of Evolution, Ecology and Behavior

Yale , Prof.Stephen C. Stearns

The Nature of Evolution: Selection, Inheritance, and History


Lecture Description

Principles of Evolution, Ecology and Behavior (EEB 122)The lecture presents an overview of evolutionary biology and its two major components, microevolution and macroevolution. The idea of evolution goes back before Darwin, although Darwin thought of natural selection. Evolution is driven by natural selection, the correlation between organism traits and reproductive success, as well as random drift. The history of life goes back approximately 3.7 billion years to a common ancestor, and is marked with key events that affect all life.00:00 - Chapter 1. Introduction 03:22 - Chapter 2. History of Evolutionary Studies 15:59 - Chapter 3. Conditions for Natural Selection 21:25 - Chapter 4. The Power of Selection and Adaptation 27:09 - Chapter 5. Drift 31:10 - Chapter 6. History of Life 39:33 - Chapter 7. ConclusionComplete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: course was recorded in Spring 2009.

Course Description

The Nature of Evolution: Selection, Inheritance, and History – Basic Transmission Genetics – Adaptive Evolution: Natural Selection – Neutral Evolution: Genetic Drift – How Selection Changes the Genetic Composition of Population – The Origin and Maintenance of Genetic Variation – The Importance of Development in Evolution – The Expression of Variation: Reaction Norms – The Evolution of Sex – Genomic Conflict – Life History Evolution – Sex Allocation – Sexual Selection – Species and Speciation – Phylogeny and Systematics – Comparative Methods: Trees, Maps, and Traits – Key Events in Evolution – Major Events in the Geological Theatre – The Fossil Record and Life’s History – Coevolution – Evolutionary Medicine – The Impact of Evolutionary Thought on the Social Sciences – The Logic of Science – Climate and the Distribution of Life on Earth – Interactions with the Physical Environment – Population Growth: Density Effects – Interspecific Competition – Ecological Communities – Island Biogeography and Invasive Species – Energy and Matter in Ecosystems – Why So Many Species? The Factors Affecting Biodiversity – Economic Decisions for the Foraging Individual – Evolutionary Game Theory: Fighting and Contests – Mating Systems and Parental Care – Alternative Breeding Strategies – Selfishness and Altruism

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