Biological Anthropology - 2nd semester


Physical anthropology will be presented as an interdisciplinary science focussed on the study of human evolution. It is intended to familiarize the students with the contributions of different research areas: Palaeontology, Archaeology, Human Ecology, Human Genetics, Primatology.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Tânia Minhós Condeço Rodrigues


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language





Boyd, R. & Silk, J. B., 2012. How humans evolved. 6th Ed. NT, London, W.W. Norton & Company.
Cartwright, J., 2000. Evolution and Human Behavior. Cambridge, The MIT Press.
Conde, C. J. C. & Ayala, F. J., 2001. Senderos de la Evolución Humana. Madrid, Alianza Editorial.
Jones, S., Martin, R. D. & Pilbeam, D. (eds.), 1995. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Human Evolution. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.
Matsuzawa, T. (ed.), 2001. Primate Origins of Human Cognition and Behavior. Tokyo, Springer-Verlag.
Vieira, A. B., 1995. Ensaios sobre a Evolução do Homem e da Linguagem. Lisboa, Fim de Século Edições.

Teaching method

The functioning of the discipline consists of lectures, that, nevertheless, allows discussion of a few topics with the students. Some documentaries related with the topics presented will be displayed in class, and discussed.

Evaluation method

Evaluation will be based on a final exam, being also considered the presence and participation of students in class. The exam will cover all topics taught during the semester.

Subject matter

1. Presentation. What is the biological anthropology?
2. Us as primates.
3. The geological time scale. The continental drift and climate change.
4. Methods of radiometric and relative dating.
5. Biology of skeleton and some methodologies used in their study.
6. Some questions of Funerary Anthropology.
7. Human Evolution
7.1. The first hominins and their characteristics
7.2. Phylogenies, morphology and behaviour of hominins
7.3. Use of tools, meat consumption and gathering behaviour
7.4. The hominins of Pleistocene
7.5. The anatomically modern humans
- The Upper Palaeolithic technology
- The behavioir of Homo sapiens sapiens
- Origin and dispersal of anatomically modern humans


Programs where the course is taught: