Darwinian Evolution and other
- What were the prevailing theories
concerning the history of
organisms on this planet prior to
Darwin? Who was Lamarck and how did his theories on the
of evolution of living organisms differ from Darwin’s?
- Who were Charles Lyell,
and Alfred R. Wallace?
How did each of these men influence Darwin in the development of his
concerning evolution? How might Gregor Mendel's findings
influenced the develoment of Darwin's ideas on evolution?
- What do we mean by evolution?
According to Darwin, what is
the driving force behind evolution (i.e. what causes organisms to
What observations and inferences did Darwin make that led him to this
of evolution by natural selection?
- What do we mean when we say that “it
is populations of
that evolve, not individuals,
however, natural selection acts directly upon individuals.” What
do we mean by the following terms
fitness, adaptation, phylogeny, artificial selection.
- Be familiar with the types of
evidence that support the evolution
of life (i.e. biogeographical, paleontological, comparative anatomy,
embryology, molecular). Be sure you understand how this evidence
supports the evolution organisms over time. Be familiar
some of the documentedexamples of natural selection at work.
is wrong with the statement that is often made by those less informed
yourselves: “Well, you know that evolution is just a theory”?
- What is a mutation?
What are some of the
of mutations? How is variation in
organisms generated? What is the source of new alleles in a
- What is the source of the majority of
the phenotypic variation
one generation to the next in most organisms? How is variation
in populations. Why doesn’t natural selection extinguish a population’s
variability by culling unfavorable genotypes (you should be able to
- Describe the three modes
directional, diversifying) acting on populations.
- What is sexual selection?
some examples of sexual selection. How are evolutionary outcomes
a compromise between sexual selection and natural selection?
- Does natural selection fashion
perfect organisms? Explain.