Ch 4: Physical Anthropology Fundamentals

About This Chapter

Review the fundamentals of physical anthropology with help from this mobile-friendly and engaging chapter. Our video and text lessons and accompanying quizzes can help you get ready for a test, finish your homework or learn about anthropology for fun.

Physical Anthropology Fundamentals - Chapter Summary

In this chapter, you'll review the fundamentals of physical anthropology, including the definition and subfields of biological anthropology and the ways genetics can help anthropologists understand human behavior. Additional lessons cover the evolution and adaptation of living primates. This chapter is designed to:

  • Explain how the process of natural selection was illustrated in Darwin's observations
  • Detail the diet and behavior of hominids
  • Define paleontology
  • Differentiate between relative age and absolute age
  • Outline the evolutionary history of humans
  • Discuss human evolution and the human fossil record

These learning materials are readily accessible 24 hours a day on your computer or mobile device for convenient study. Watch an entire video lesson to cover all the topics, or skip ahead to a specific section using the video tabs found in the Timeline. Our printable lesson transcripts make great study guides you can use to review essential keywords and themes.

10 Lessons in Chapter 4: Physical Anthropology Fundamentals
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
What is Biological Anthropology? - Definition & Subfields

1. What is Biological Anthropology? - Definition & Subfields

Why do some people fear open spaces? How can science help solve crimes? These and many other questions have much to do with the field of biological anthropology.

How Genetics Helps Us Understand Human Behavior

2. How Genetics Helps Us Understand Human Behavior

This lesson demonstrates how physical anthropologists use genetics to better understand the human experience. You'll learn how they combine their knowledge of both biology and the social sciences together to contribute to their field.

How Darwin's Observations Showed the Process of Natural Selection

3. How Darwin's Observations Showed the Process of Natural Selection

In this lesson, we will learn about the observations that led to the development of Darwin's theory of natural selection. We'll explore how natural selection happens and how this brings about genetic diversity.

Living Primates: Evolution, Adaptation & Behavior

4. Living Primates: Evolution, Adaptation & Behavior

What do you have in common with other primates? What's different? This lesson begins to explore these questions, including the physical and behavioral adaptations that helped primates to evolve.

The Evolution of Humans: Characteristics & Evolutionary History

5. The Evolution of Humans: Characteristics & Evolutionary History

Just like other organisms, humans have changed over time. We will look at the evolution of humans as well as connections with our primate relatives, including Old World and New World primates.

Hominids: Traits, Diet & Behavior

6. Hominids: Traits, Diet & Behavior

This lesson will help you to better understand hominids. We'll discuss the characteristics, diet and behavior of hominids, in order to give you a better idea of what this species is like.

Paleontology & Dinosaurs - Definition, History & Facts

7. Paleontology & Dinosaurs - Definition, History & Facts

For most of human history, paleontology was like the fossil evidence it is based on--undiscovered. Once unearthed, the science of paleontology grew rapidly, evolving in unpredictable ways. Learn the definition of paleontology and the history of this rock-solid science, then test your new knowledge with a quiz.

What is Relative Age? - Definition & Effect

8. What is Relative Age? - Definition & Effect

How do geologists determine the age of different rock layers or fossils without the aid of modern equipment? Learn how geologists use rock layers to determine relative ages.

Absolute Age: Definition & Dating

9. Absolute Age: Definition & Dating

Imagine braving the desert heat for days or even weeks as you dig for dinosaur bones. You find something extraordinary and want to know as much about it as you can. In this lesson, you'll learn how scientists determine the absolute age of materials.

The Human Fossil Record & Human Evolution

10. The Human Fossil Record & Human Evolution

Fossils can help tell the story of how we evolved. This lesson sheds light on our closest relatives from the past and what traits human beings have developed over time. You'll learn about those species that are extinct but who live on in our genes.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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