Human evolution is a subject attracting as much attention and publicity today as at any time in the past. The term “hominid” is used to denote man and his immediate ancestors or near-ancestors. Among the objectives of the unit are: to present methods for better understanding the magnitude of geological time; to familiarize students with basic characteristics of hominid forms; to consider some of the interdisciplinary methods for studying human origins; to consider the relationship between morphology and function; to familiarize students with the modern consensus ideas of human evolution; to present the idea that scientific data are frequently interpreted differently and that scientific models change. The narrative section addresses each objective separately. A unit outline and three lesson plans (two based on slide sets) are followed by an extensive annotated bibliography.
(The unit is intended for Biology, Advanced Biology, and Anthropology students who have had some background in the study of animal diversity and evolution; can be adapted for use in other science classes.)