Skip to main content

Human Evolution and Evolutionary Psychology


  • Credit value: 15 credits at level 6
  • Convenor: Gillian Forrester
  • Assessment: a two-hour examination (100%)

Module description

The aims of this course are to introduce you to some of the methods, ideas, and findings within the broad field of evolutionary psychology. This can cover palaeontology, primate evolution, speciation of homo sapiens, the application of ideas from our evolutionary history to contemporary life, and the evolution of specific abilities such as language.

Indicative module content

  • Basic principles of evolution
  • Evolution of the human brain, with a focus on language and hemisphere asymmetries
  • Social cognition and theory of mind from an evolutionary perspective
  • Kin selection and altruism
  • Mate choice and sexual selection
  • Parental investment and human reproductive behavior
  • Psychopathology (schizophrenia, depression, phobias) in an evolutionary context