Physical Anthropology

Syllabus Sections

Publish Date

01/17/2012 09:59:25

Physical Anthropology


Spring 2012
01/17/2012 - 05/13/2012

Course Information

Section 005
Distance Learning
Clint Davis

Office Hours

  • T W Th
    12 - 3 P
    RGC 3103

Course Requirements


Professor Clint E. Davis

Intro to Physical Anthropology   Spring 2012       No Prerequisites           

ANTH 2301   Syn  43101    Lec  003

MW:  10:35-11:50      A251                      


Office: RGC3-3103.0 

Office Hours: By Appointment: 12-3  T,W,Th

Office Phone: 512-223-3389

E Mail:


Course Description: An introduction to the study of the biocultural diversity of humans. The interaction between culture and biology produces a variety of human biological adaptations that is traced through the following venues: the fossil record of primates, primate behavior, and the genetic makeup of modern populations.


Required Materials: Essentials of Physical Anthropology by Jurmain, Kilgore, Trevathan. 8th ed.


Course Rationale: The goal of this course is to trace the evolution of human biological diversity and how it has been interwoven with culture over 60+ million years to produce the present variation in human biology and culture. To meet this goal the course has four objectives: (1) to apply anthropological knowledge and skills to everyday life and their chosen careers, (2) to apply the course towards an associates degree at Austin Community College and (3) to prepare them for success in upper division courses in Anthropology at other institutions.


Instructional Methodology: Instructional techniques include- lecture; question/answer; group discussion and supplemental exercises that emphasize anthropological techniques. Lectures/Text: Lectures are designed to help students understand the material presented in the text, but is by no means a substitute for reading the text. Do not bring your textbooks to class! Students may not work on any materials during lecture and may not sleep in class. On exams, students are responsible for all text, lecture and class materials.


Common Objectives: By the end of this course, the student:

* Will be able to describe what anthropology and physical anthropology are.

* Will understand the methods and theories of anthropology.

* Will understand the processes of evolution.

* Will understand the processes of biocultural hominid evolution.

* Will understand human diversity.











·        Class Attendance is necessary to obtain credit for class exercises and to keep up with any changes in the class syllabus. The syllabus is subject to revisal at anytime and is often modified to suit the needs of the class!


·        Classroom Behavior: The class begins when the instructor asks are there any questions, concerns, or comments. Once the class begins students may not talk to other students, work on exercises (unless so directed), read (including class text or other materials), sleep, or operate any electronic or mechanical device. No food is allowed to be consumed during class. The preceding are no tolerance policies. Failure to comply can result in a student being immediately withdrawn from the course.


·        If a Student Wishes to Withdraw it is His or Hers Responsibility!


·        No Retests!


·        No Incompletes Given!


·        Make-ups: Students must contact instructor prior to any assignment, exercise or exam to be considered for a makeup.


·        Scholastic Dishonesty: Acts prohibited by the college include scholastic dishonesty, including but not limited to cheating on an exam, a quiz or exercise; plagiarizing other’s works; and unauthorized collaboration with another person in preparing class work. Academic work submitted by students shall be the result of their thought, research, or self-expression. Academic work is defined as but limited to tests, quizzes, whether taken electronically or on paper, either individual or group; classroom presentations, and homework. Punishment for scholastic dishonesty may include grade reduction and or expulsion from the class.


·        Students with Disabilities: Each ACC campus offers support services for students with documented physical or psychological disabilities. Students with disabilities must request reasonable accommodations through the office for Students with Disabilities on the campus where they expect to take the majority of their classes.


·        Academic Freedom: “Each student is strongly encouraged to participate in class discussion. In any classroom situation that includes discussion and critical thinking, there are bound to be many differing viewpoints. Students may not only disagree with each other at times, but the students and instructor may also find that they have disparate views on sensitive and volatile topics. It is my hope that these differences will enhance class discussion and create an atmosphere where students and instructor alike will be encouraged to think and learn. Therefore, be assured that your grades will not be adversely affected by any beliefs or ideas expressed in class or in assignments. Rather, we will all respect the views of others when expressed in classroom discussions”


Safety Statement

Austin Community College is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for study and work. Students are expected to learn and comply with ACC environmental, health and safety procedures and to agree to follow ACC safety policies. Additional information on these can be found at Because some health and safety circumstances are beyond our control, we ask that you become familiar with the Emergency Procedures poster and Campus Safety Plan map in each classroom. Additional information about emergency procedures and how to sign up for ACC Emergency Alerts to be notified in the event of a serious emergency can be found at note that students are expected to conduct themselves professionally, with respect and courtesy to all. Anyone who thoughtlessly or intentionally jeopardizes the health or safety of another individual will be dismissed from the day’s class activity, may be withdrawn from the class, and/or barred from attending future activities.

Use of ACC email

All College e-mail communication to students will be sent solely to the student’s ACCmail account, with the expectation that such communications will be read in a timely fashion. ACC will send important information and will notify you of any college related emergencies using this account.  Students should only expect to receive email communication from their instructor using this account.  Likewise, students should use their ACCmail account when communicating with instructors and staff.  Instructions for activating an ACCmail account can be found at

Testing Center Policy

Under certain circumstances, an instructor may have students take an examination in a testing center.  Students using the Academic Testing Center must govern themselves according to the Student Guide for Use of ACC Testing Centers and should read the entire guide before going to take the exam.  To request an exam, one must have:

  • ACC Photo ID
  • Course Abbreviation (e.g., ENGL)
  • Course Number (e.g.,1301)
  • Course Synonym (e.g., 10123)
  • Course Section (e.g., 005)
  • Instructor's Name

Do NOT bring cell phones to the Testing Center.  Having your cell phone in the testing room, regardless of whether it is on or off, will revoke your testing privileges for the remainder of the semester.  ACC Testing Center policies can be found at

Student and Instructional Services

ACC strives to provide exemplary support to its students and offers a broad variety of opportunities and services.  Information on these services and support systems is available at:

Links to many student services and other information can be found at: Learning Labs provide free tutoring services to all ACC students currently enrolled in the course to be tutored.  The tutor schedule for each Learning Lab may be found at:

For help setting up your ACCeID, ACC Gmail, or ACC Blackboard, see a Learning Lab Technician at any ACC Learning Lab.




Grades are Determined by 4 Scores! Each Score Consists of the Following Three Parts:


1.    Exam: Text and Lecture: 1 pt per multiple choice question.

(10-20 multiple questions per chapter/lecture)


2.    Chapter Questions: 10pts each: Each chapter exercise consists of students’ response to one critical thinking question from each chapter due at the beginning of the class lecture for the chapter. In all cases the question is #1 for each chapter. Students who are not present (late or absent) when the topic is given out will have their grade reduced.


3.    Video Exercises: 10 pts each: Each Video Exercise consists of students’ answers to important video topics given out at the beginning of the class. Students who are not present (late or absent) when the topic is given out will have their exercise recorded as a missed exercise*


*Missed and Late: Exams & Exercises


  1. Class Exercises: No late exercises for full credit-They are considered late if the student is not present when the video starts or the chapter critical thinking question is due!


  1. Exams: Missed exams may be made up only if the student contacts the professor prior to the exam being given out to the class!


Course Grade: The average of 4 Scores is used to determine the overall semester grade. “A”=100-90 pts, “B”=89-80 pts, “C”=79-70 pts, “D”=69-60 pts, and “F”=59 or below


Students who Arrive Late


  1. Students who are late to class must sign in and not disturb  the class, other students or the lecture! Failure to observe the preceding may result in the student being withdrawn from the course.


  1. Students are considered late if they are not in a seat when the lecture begins.


  1. Late students may not receive full credit for any video or exercises.









Dates                Required Readings, Assignments and Class Content

Jan.      16         Holiday-MLK Day

              18         Discussion of Syllabus and Assignments

Jan.      23         Ch. 1: Intro to Physical Anthropology  [Chapter 1 CT Question Due]

              25         Ch. 2: Evolutionary History  [Chapter 2 CT Question  Due]

Jan.      30         Video: “Galapagos, Beyond Darwin”-Part 1  [Video Ex]

                1         Video: “Galapagos, Beyond Darwin”-Part 2 [Video Ex]

Feb.        6         Ch. 4: Heredity and Evolution: [Chapter 4 CT Question  Due] 

                8         Heredity and Evolution:

Feb.      13         Chs. 3,4-Codominance & Polygenics  [Chapter 3 CT Question Due]

              15         Chs. 3 & 4 Cellular Genetics

Feb.      20         Exam 1 Review

              22         Score 1: Exam 1: Lecture: Chs1-4,Chapter CTs & Video Exs

Feb.     27         Exams Returned & Reviewed

            29           Ch. 6: Overview of Primates [Chapter 6 CT Question Due]     

March     5         Video: Chimp Behavior and Society [Video Ex]

                7         Ch. 7: Primate Behavior  [Chapter 7 CT Question Due]


March 12-16    Spring Break


March 19         Score 2: Exam 2: Lec: Chs 1,2,3,4, Chapter CTs & Video Exs  

              21         Exams Returned & Reviewed

March  26         Ch. 8: Primate and Hominid Origins [Chapter 8 CT Question Due]

              28         Video: "Human Origins"-Part 1 [Video Ex-1]

April       2         Video: "Human Origins"-Part 2 [Video Ex-2]

                4         Ch. 9: Dispersal of Homo erectus [Chapter 9 CT Question Due]

April       9         Early Hominid Comparative Anatomy and Culture

              11         Score 3: Exam 3, Lecture: Chs 8,9, Chapter CTs & Video Exs

April     16         Exams Returned & Reviewed

              18         Student Grades Reviewed


April     23         Last Day to Withdraw (Monday)


April      23         Ch. 10: Pre-Modern Humans [Chapter 10 CT Question Due]

              25         Pre-Modern Anatomy and Culture

April     30          Video: “The Route to Modernity” [Video Ex]

                3         Ch. 11: A. M. Humans  [Chapter 11 CT Question Due]

May        7         Score 4: Exam 4, Lecture: Chs10-11,Chapter CTs & Video Exs

              9           Grades Returned!



Maya Prehistory and Environment



Archaeology and Cultural Anthropology




Austin Classes: Mid May  – Early June    

Belize Classes: Early June – Mid-June















  • 6 Hrs. College Credit in Anthropology
  • Limited to 12 students









For Program Details Contact: Professor Clint Davis


(512) 223-3389


Further Info Available on ACC International Programs Website: