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FSU / Psychology / PSY 4930 / Who proposed germ plasm theory?

Who proposed germ plasm theory?

Who proposed germ plasm theory?

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EVOLUTIONARY PSYCHOLOGY STUDY GUIDE EXAM 1


Who proposed germ plasm theory?



★ Human minds are prone to biases and fallacies

○ We use our own minds to evaluate our minds in psychology ○ Error without passion: make mistakes of reasoning- we go beyond what we know and refute experts who actually know

○ Non-Motivated Bias

■ Lack of understanding

○ Motivated Bias

■ Our brains are designed to see things in certain ways

★ Naturalistic fallacy, moralistic fallacy, confirmation bias ○ Naturalistic fallacy

■ We evolved with good and bad tendencies

■ Thornhill said rape was adaptive (never said it was good!) ■ Because it is natural, that mean it’s good  

● Whether something is natural or not, that doesn’t  


How do you calculate hamiltonian?



Don't forget about the age old question of What is entropy in layman's terms?

distinguish morality

○ Moralistic fallacy

■ Denying truth of something because it offends one’s morals or  bad moral consequences

● Anything that has unpleasant consequences cannot exist,  which is false because for example, Hitler and Stalin  

existed

● Some people deny sex differences

● Just because we find out potentially troubling about  

humans, doesn’t mean we have to be immoral If you want to learn more check out What is acupuncture used to treat?

● Many evolutionary psychologists have been attacked

● It is important to be charitable to others, assume good  

motives toward Evolution Psychologists

● Morals different than nature

○ Just because there are differences between races  


What are proximate and ultimate causes of behavior?



and sexes, doesn’t mean we should discriminate or  

become immoral

○ We need to separate facts from values and only  

debate facts

○ Confirmation bias

■ The tendency to favor information that we agree with and to  disregard evidence that doesnt

■ Once you come up with your hypothesis, try to falsify it (prove it  wrong)

■ Get more information if you try to refute yourself

■ Selective exposure: We look for information with which we  agree.  

■ Biased Processing: we are skeptical of information that we  disagree with. So, if you’re a liberal, read/understand  We also discuss several other topics like What is an asteroid made of?

conservative articles, etc.

★ Evolutionary psychology is often attacked

1. genetic/biological determinism

a. Not all evolutionary psychology is the same-- it’s a broad topic! b. Plenty disagreements

c. Unifying principle is the application of Darwinian Principles to  human nature

d. No Evolutionary Psychology (EP) fails to recognize that the  environment is important

2. Sexist

a. Several gender differences in the field

b. Averages do not dictate reality

c. EP do believe however, that people differ

3. Racist

4. Used by eugenicists and nazis

a. Eugenics means “good stock” (def: improving the human  population by controlled breeding to increase desirable heritable characteristics) If you want to learn more check out Do teachers matter?

b. Francis Galton

c. Positive: healthy/talented to breed

d. Negative: prevent least talented/skilled to not breed We also discuss several other topics like What is the core of financial accounting?
We also discuss several other topics like What is the 4-step cycle of taking public health action?

★ Evolution proposed before Darwin; Darwin forwarded mechanism:  Natural Selection

○ Evolution

■ Evolution by natural selection is the foundation of biology

■ Humans are biological creatures just like other creatures

■ “Nothing in biology makes sense except in light of evolution” -  Theodosius Dobzhansky

○ Natural Selection

■ Darwin was NOT the first person

■ His grandfather, Erasmus, also proposed evolution

■ Darwin conveyed Natural Selection

○ Charles Darwin

■ Born in 1809

■ Studied geology “natural history” and ideas of evolution to  explain distribution of animals

○ Artificial Selection

■ Domestication: selectively breeding certain animals (desired  heritable traits are bred, others die)

● EX: wolf → pet dog

○ Belyayav’s Fox Study

■ By 1964, Foxes were more domesticated

■ The fox was bred for tameness and was put into three categories ● 1. Least domesticated

● 2. Allow touch but aren’t friendly

● 3. Most domesticated, friendly

★ Thomas Malthus’ Essay on Population

○ Wrote the book, “An Essay on the Principle of Population” argued that  populations grow geometrically where food grows linearly  

○ Populations tend to outgrow food supply

○ Increase in productivity does not lead to wealth but more humans  which leads to poverty

○ “World of Doom”

■ Implies that the world is endless competition and little progress

★ Basic Principles: variation, competition/selection, heritability ○ Darwin realized that organisms who survive will reproduce more by  understanding competition and artificial selection, and the offspring  will share characteristics and overtime, this will lead to different traits  or a new species.

○ NATURAL SELECTION: GENES!!!!!!! NOT INDIVIDUALS  (GENOTYPE NOT PHENOTYPE)

○ Selection has to be adaptive!

○ Three Basic Principles

■ Variation: not all animals are the same

● EX: some deer are faster than others

■ Differential survival/reproduction: some survive/reproduce more  than others

● EX: the faster deer survive more than the slower deer and have more offspring

■ Inheritance: traits are passed from parents to offspring

● EX: deer’s fast speed is inherited and passed down  

through generations

○ EXAMPLE: Sharks with strong snouts

■ Variation: ability to smell

■ Differential reproduction: stronger snouts lead to better smell  and pass it down to offspring

■ Inheritance: offspring inherits parent’s potent sense of smell

○ Darwinism is gradual- species blend into each other and evolution  happens over time. However, Italian Wall Lizards (and other species)  are a special case and have showcased evolved traits (cecal valve)

○ Types of Selection

■ Directional: trait shifts in a direction (slow/fast speed)

● caused by something new in the environment

○ EX: fox in a snowy environment shifts to a white  

color from grey ---> camouflage ---> survives --->  

reproduces ---> passed down genes

○ Humans use cultural technology (spear)

■ Spear-use increased, which means spear skill

increased, which led men to go to war, hunt,  

kill, etc.  

■ Stabilizing: trait tends toward middle-- too big/small eliminated ● tunes organism to consistent ecology

○ Toads that are afraid but also braze to go eat are  

the ones that survive (fear and bravery are on a  

continuum)

○ Works for human personality traits as well

○ Neuroticism avoids risks that improve fitness, but  

too much openness to experience or risky  

behaviors can lead to death

○ Being the median between the two is the most  

successful

■ Diversifying: different/both types favored

● selection favors extremes

○ Frequency dependent selection

■ Forces depend upon the frequency of some  

trait

■ EX: bluffing in poker: more times you bluff,  

the value of bluffing decreases because more

players will call bluff

■ Speculations say sociopathy is a frequency  

dependent strategy

■ Negative value decreases

■ Positive value increases (EX:  

cooperation/altruism)

○ Mechanism of Inheritance

■ One of the three principles (offspring inherits traits from parents) ■ The mechanism of inheritance is DNA: genetics

■ Alterations to your phenotype will be passed down to your  offspring (Lamarcks’s Theory)

○ Germ-Plasm Theory: Weismann

■ Only changes that are passed to the offspring is in the germ line  (sex cells), rejection Lamarck’s theory

○ Genetics: Mendel

■ Traits don’t blend

● Evolution wouldn’t happen because everybody would be  the same

■ Traits are passed along independently

● Short, white rose/tall, red rose

○ One will get height, one will get color

★ Selfish gene revolution

○ Main point: evolution is about genes 

○ The genes focus on the selection of specific traits (targets traits); The  gene is inevitably selfish because it focuses more on itself and passing  

its targeted genes

○ Because genes are selfish, doesn’t mean organisms are 

★ Selfish gene perspective; kin selection

○ “I would lay down my life for 2 brothers, or 8 cousins” - Haldane ■ Natural selection favors replicating genes not organisms 

★ Hamilton’s equation

○ rb>c  

■ r: coefficient of relatedness 

■ c: benefit to organism (always measured in genes) 

■ c: cost to organism (always measured in genes) 

★ Coefficients of relatedness

○ Humans share 99% of genes together, brothers share 50% of UNIQUE

alleles

○ Gene percentages decrease- 12.5% for first cousins, .78% for third  

cousins

○ Brothers: 2 * .5 = 1 

○ Cousins: 8 *.125 = 1 

○ FAIR TRADE!! 

★ Alarm Calls

○ Usually females give alarms 

○ Give more alarms when kin are around (scent recognition) ○ Not competitive when around kin 

■ Plants don’t grow more leaves when kin are around 

★ Maternal Perinatal Association

○ Sign of kinship, intcest avoidance reaction 

★ Facial Recognition 

○ Recognize kin via facial similarity 

○ Find people with similar features more trustworthy, but less sexually  attractive

★ Inclusive Fitness

○ Fitness of an organism including reproductive success of its relatives

○ we take the individual’s own success and then multiply it by the  

coefficient of relationship times the success of relatives

○ High inclusive fitness: cooperate with siblings, attractive, successful ○ Low inclusive fitness: rude, no concern for kin 

★ Proximate and ultimate causes

○ From the ultimate level, behavior will be selfish but not always  

from the proximate level.  

■ Ultimate: helping led to increased inclusive fitness because it  increased desirability as social partner

■ Proximate: sincere desire to help others, can be altruistic and  not selfish

○ Proximate level IS OFTEN NOT ABOUT FITNESS AT ALL even  though ultimate is almost always about fitness

■ People are not designed to consciously desire inclusive fitness  but enjoy activities that would increase inclusive fitness

■ Ultimate: people who created more art, had more sexual  

partners. Proximate: creating art is fun and rewarding

■ Proximate

● Physiological and psychological are based on individual  

differences and variation is key

● We take intelligence as a variable and the correlate it to  

an outcome variable (SES)

○ Ultimate level

■ Natural selection

○ Proximate level

■ Neural design

○ Output behavior

★ Ultimate

○ Ultimate: this level is going to be genes or fitness in some way ○ Best ways to think about ultimate- trait approach and pressures  approach

★ Proximate

○ Physiological and psychological are individual differences ○ based on example of “why did brad fall in love with angelina?” ■ Physiological: beauty (finds it appealing and seeks after it) ■ Psychological: beauty is rewarding and feels good (hormones,  neurotransmitters)

■ Social: they worked together or got along  

■ Cultural: in our culture, when you spend time together you get  married

★ Trait approach

○ Functions and then features of trait or other way around 

■ EX: ANGER 

● Features: blood rushes, wants to harm/damage, highly motivated,  ● Function: motivated to challenge person 

★ Selective pressures approach

○ Think about evolutionary pressures our ancestors faced 

○ Think about traits that facilitate survival 

★ Different kinds of motives for serial killers

○ organized/disorganized 

■ Organized:  

● Carefully planned murders 

● Smarter than disorganized 

● Knowledge of forensic science 

● Maintain control over crime scene 

● Etc. 

■ Disorganized: 

● Impulse murders 

● Not planned victims 

● Leave a mess at crime scene 

● Unprepared 

● Below average intelligence 

● Etc.  

★ Not geniuses depicted in films

○ Usually below the average IQ 

★ Sexual sadism 

○ Although some men/women are aroused by violence, most are not ○ Possibility for violence/sex to intertwine

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