About This Chapter
Evolution Overview - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives
Charles Darwin's studies are the foundation of evolution, but there's a lot more to the study of how our billions of species became so distinct. In this chapter, you'll learn about Darwin's research and theory but also about population genetics, speciation, natural selection, and more. In each video, our instructors concentrate on one aspect of evolution, using examples to help explain the concepts. You'll see how the peppered moth has evolved with its environment and how to calculate the frequency of alleles within a population. This chapter is designed to teach you:
- How to use the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium
- The mechanisms of natural selection and adaptation
- The barriers between interspecies breeding
- How genetic variation occurs in populations
|Theory of Evolution||Take a look at the interplay between population genetics and environment to understand evolution.|
|Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium I: Overview||Understand how the genetics of a large, stable population can change over time.|
|Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium II: The Equation||Learn the equation for the equilibrium to understand the frequency of alleles in a gene pool.|
|Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium III: Evolutionary Agents||See how to use the equation for populations that are not in equilibrium.|
|Natural Selection and Adaptation||Explore the evolution of a species by looking at traits that help animals survive in the wild.|
|Types of Natural Selection||Study the different ways that animals can respond to their changing environments over time.|
|Speciation I: Allopatric and Sympatric Speciation||Take a look at how species split to become two new species.|
|Speciation II: Prezygotic Barriers||Understand the biological barriers that keep species from interbreeding.|
|Speciation III: Postzygotic Barriers||Learn how biological processes stop different species from having offspring.|
|Evidence for Evolution||See some of the evidence that has been gathered to support the theory of evolution.|
|Genetic Variability and Random Mutation||Explore the different genes that can occur within a species and how random mutation affects this.|
|The Peppered Moths and Evolution||Study the evolution of the peppered moth to understand how species adapt to their environments.|
1. Theories of Evolution: Lamarck vs. Darwin
We'll look at the interplay between population genetics and environment. Are traits individually acquired or do entire populations evolve? The flying hamsters and a few other notable experiments will provide the answers.
2. Evidence for Evolution: Paleontology, Biogeography, Embryology, Comparative Anatomy & Molecular Biology
There is much support for the theory of evolution. This evidence comes from a variety of scientific fields and provides information that helps us trace changes in species over time. In this lesson, we'll look at this evidence and explore how it supports the theory of evolution.
3. Rates of Evolution: Punctuated Equilibrium & Molecular Clock Hypothesis
In general, evolution is a very long process. But rates of evolution can be different for different organisms. In this video lesson, you will identify how scientists study rates of evolution and fill in some of the missing 'steps' in the fossil record.
4. Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium I: Overview
In this lesson, we'll examine population genetics in greater detail. We'll also explore notions of Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium for large, stable populations. Is the genetic makeup of our flying hamster population changing? The Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium can serve as a reference point as we try to answer population genetics questions.
5. Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium II: The Equation
The Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium equation is represented by a polynomial, so we'll have to do some calculations. Don't be intimidated; a few coin tosses can help us make sense of allelic frequencies in a given gene pool.
6. Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium III: Evolutionary Agents
In this lesson, you'll learn how the Hardy-Weinberg equation relates to different evolutionary agents and population changes. Discover how the equation may be used to discover populations that are not in equilibrium.
7. Natural Selection & Adaptation: Definition, Theory & Examples
How does natural selection help shape the amazing types of animals we witness around us? In this lesson, we'll explore adaptations and what they can tell us about a species' past evolution.
8. Natural Selection: Definition, Types & Examples
We'll take a look at the types of natural selection that can occur. From flying hamsters to moths, you'll start to grasp the different paths organisms can take as they respond to their changing environments over time.
9. Speciation: Allopatric and Sympatric Speciation
Discover the definition of a species and learn more about how species split. Find out common terms related to the splitting of species and study what role polyploidy plays in the development of a species.
10. Prezygotic Reproductive Barriers & Speciation: Definition & Examples
We may take for granted why animals choose to mate with other animals of similar appearance, but it's not that simple. There are actually biological barriers to reproduction that can prevent even seemingly closely related species from reproducing. This lesson looks at one such category of hindrances, prezygotic barriers, which make fertilization impossible.
11. Postzygotic Reproductive Barriers: Definition & Examples
Do flying hamsters represent a separate species from your run-of-the-mill hamsters? We'll get to the bottom of this by performing crosses between the two hamster types. You'll explore postzygotic reproductive barriers and their possibly tragic consequences.
12. Genetic Variability and Random Mutation
Evolution is driven by variation among populations. The amount of variability determines how well a population can adapt to environmental changes, while random mutations can provide new variations that help a population adapt to unexpected changes.
13. An Example of Rapid Adaptation: The Peppered Moths
Normally, adaptations occur over thousands or millions of years. However, drastic changes in the environment can shorten the time period in which a change comes about. In such cases, we can learn a lot about the evolutionary process and how natural selection drives it forward.
14. Artificial Selection in Evolution
Humans have been selectively breeding for desirable traits in plants and animals for a long time. This artificial selection allows for a lot of control in the breeding process but can also lead to unintended mutations within a population of organisms.
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