Chapter 6 Flashcards & Key Terms

adaptation
Here, a trait that increases the probability that an individual will leave offspring in subsequent generations.
analogy
Similarity of function, although the structures of interest may look different. The human hand and an elephant’s trunk are analogous features.
australopithecine
Of or related to Australopithecus, a primate genus, known only from the fossil record, thought to be an ancestor to humans.
chromosome
A complex of condensed strands of DNA and associated protein molecules; found in the nucleus of cells.
convergent evolution
The evolutionary process by which responses to similar ecological features bring about similarities in behavior or structure among animals that are only distantly related (i.e., that differ in genetic heritage).
encephalization factor
A measure of brain size relative to body size.
endocast
A cast of the cranial cavity of a skull, especially useful for studying fossils of extinct species.
evolution by natural selection
The Darwinian theory that evolution proceeds by differential success in reproduction.
evolution
The process by which a population of interbreeding individuals changes over long periods of time.
evolutionary psychology
A field devoted to asking how natural selection has shaped behavior in humans.
genetics
The study of inheritance, including the genes encoded in DNA.
genus
A group of species that resemble each other because of shared inheritance.
homology
A physical resemblance that is based on common ancestry, such as the similarity in forelimb structures of different mammals.
homoplasy
A physical resemblance that is due to convergent evolution, such as the similar body form of tuna and dolphins.
mutation
A change in the nucleotide sequence of a gene as a result of unfaithful replication.
naturalist
A student of animal life and structure.
neocortex or isocortex
Cerebral cortex that is made up of six distinct layers.
phylogeny
The evolutionary history of a particular group of organisms.
sexual selection
Darwin’s theoretical mechanism for the evolution of anatomical and behavioral differences between males and females.
species
A group of individuals that can readily interbreed to produce fertile offspring.
taxonomy
The classification of organisms.
Go