SCI1200 - Humans, evolution and modern society - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

School of Biological Sciences

Chief examiner(s)

Associate Professor Bob Wong


Associate Professor Bob Wong

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2018 (On-campus)


BIO1011, BIO1022 and BIO1042


Evolution has shaped and continues to shape humans and the world in which we live. Some of the most challenging issues facing society such as the battle of the sexes, war and violence, population growth and even the global obesity epidemic can be understood through the process of evolution. An evolutionary perspective also equips us to address emerging issues such as the manipulation of human behaviour, spread of infectious diseases, the rise of allergies, the ethics of cloning, food security, and the biodiversity crisis. This unit will highlight how an appreciation of evolution can transform our understanding of the human condition, modern society, and the profound global challenges that we are currently facing - enabling us to develop robust and creative solutions for the future.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Identify and interpret the biggest challenges faced by modern society from an evolutionary perspective;
  2. Describe the fundamentals of evolution, and how these shape the diversity of life on the planet;
  3. Articulate how evolutionary processes have affected and continue to affect the environment in which we live, as well as human health and behaviour;
  4. Differentiate between evidence, interpretation, opinion and fact in evaluating evolutionary perspectives and concepts applied to the development of modern human society.
  5. Effectively synthesise and communicate findings of articles, blogs, book chapters and books written on these issues for the general educated public.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

The unit will consist of one two-hour lecture and one two hour tutorial per week

Students will need to conduct approximately 8 hours of personal study each week in order to satisfy the reading and assignment requirements.

See also Unit timetable information