Behavior and Evolutionary Theory|
The current and historical importance of behavioral phenotypes in evolutionary theory.
Behavior as an approachable metaphor for understanding phenotypic evolution.
|02||Natural Selection and Adaptation|
Requirements of evolution, and causes of evolutionary change.
Components of phenotypic variation and the importance of additive genetic variation
|03||Genes and Behavior|
Connecting genotype, phenotype, and fitness. Neutral models and optimally models.
Frequency dependent selection using the class as a model population.
|04||Levels and Limits of Selection|
Selection thinking problems. What are the limits of selection? Does selection commonly act on groups? What kinds of errors are made when thinking about evolution by natural selection?
Trait Group Selection and Virulence|
Trait group selection logic, the evolution of pathogen virulence in response to variation in transmission rate between hosts. Effects of transmission fidelity and vector on pathogen virulence.
Kin Selection - Ideas|
Types of social interactions: mutualism, parasitism, altruism, and spite. Cost and benefits to actor and recipient. Hamilton's rule and inclusive fitness. Individual selection. Calculating relatedness.
Kin Selection - Implications|
Mechanisms of recognizing and directing benefits toward kin: mechanistic vs probabilistic. Eusociality: relatedness in haplodiploid organisms and other contributing ecological factors
Cooperation and Reciprocity - Ideas|
Reproductive helping and the evolution of cooperation between non-relatives.
The mathematical relationship between theories of kin selection and reciprocal altruism.
Cooperation and Reciprocity - Implications|
Influences on the probability of reciprocation. Non zero-sum interactions. Repeated individual interactions. Associate quality. Mechanism of detecting cheaters.
|10||Parent-Offspring Conflict - Ideas|
Local competition and implications of kin selection for competition among relatives. Asymmetries in relatedness and parent-offspring conflict over investment.
|11||Parent-Offspring Conflict - Implications|
Maternal fetal conflict, ultimate reasons, proximate mechanisms. Genetic imprinting and psychosocial disorders as a byproduct of parent-offspring conflict.
|12||Evolutionary Games - Ideas|
Evolutionary stable strategies. Frequency dependence revisited. Differences between Prisoner’s Dilemma and Snowdrift (Chicken) games.
Evolutionary Games - Implications|
Are humans rational? Playing evolutionary games using the class as a model population. Prisoner’s dilemma with and without payback, ultimatum and dictator.
Evolution of Sex|
Evolution of anisogamy and evolutionary stable strategies. Two-fold cost of sexual versus asexual reproduction. Individual costs and benefits of sex: Clonal competition, Muller’s ratchet, Red Queen.
Frequency dependent selection and the evolution of sex ratio as a case study in individual selection. Fisher’s model. Investigation of extreme sex ratios by Hamilton and sex-ratio control by Trivers.
Genetic constraints on adaptive phenotypic evolution as viewed from the perspective of a selfish allele. The evolution of genetic architectures in response to evolutionary conflict.
Similarities and differences between natural and sexual selection. Components of fitness. Variance in reproductive success, sexual dimorphism and sexual conflict over parental investment.
Mating Systems and Parental Care|
Mating systems: promiscuous, monogamous, polyandrous and polygynous. Male parental care and threshold of female choice of polygyny versus monogamy.
Variance in male reproductive success and female choice for good, compatible, or sexy alleles. The handicap principle and limits on the exaggeration of male traits.
Alternative Mating Strategies|
Male-male competition, female choice and the evolution of alternative male strategies. Condition dependent and frequency dependent alternative mating strategies.
Communication and Self Deception|
Types of communication: honest, deceptive, eavesdropping, ignoring. Deception, lie detection, and the evolution of self-deception.
Human Mating Systems|
Interpretation of an episode of the NPR radio program This American Life which examines the mating system of pimps and prostitutes in California in the 1970’s.
Synthesis of course concepts. Using genetics to evaluate adaptive hypotheses.