Life, Sex & Death: Current Debates in Human Biology and Behaviour - ANTB5700

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Spring Term 6 15 (7.5) Chris Deter checkmark-circle


This module is designed as an exercise in the critical appraisal of current research in the fields of human biology, human behaviour and biological anthropology. Students are expected to critically engage with a series of research topics and demonstrate their ability to evaluate the scientific contribution. This module is an advanced treatment of current topics and debates in biological anthropology, human behaviour, and behavioural biology including those in genetics, palaeoanthropology, evolutionary psychology, bioarchaeology, and primatology. This module will help students understand the role of research and publication in biological and behavioural science. Students will be exposed to a broad series of topics, opinions, methodologies and journals.


Contact hours

Total contact hours 22
Private study hours 128
Total study hours 150


Compulsory to : BSc Human Biology and Behaviour
Optional to : BSc Anthropology ; BSc Biological Anthropology

Method of assessment

Seminar Leader & Presentation 25%
5 Pop Quizzes 25%
Grant Proposal (2500 words) 50%

Reassessment methods
Reassessment Instrument: 100% Coursework

Indicative reading

The reading list for this module will change from year to year. It will contain the most up to date, controversial topics in a variety of fields associated with biological anthropology. Articles will be drawn from the following journals and other relevant sources where appropriate:
Nature, Science, Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences (USA), Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences, Journal of Human Evolution, Evolutionary Anthropology, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, PLoS ONE, Evolution and Human Behaviour, Journal of Archaeological Sciences, Hormones and Behaviour, Physiology and Behaviour.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 Demonstrate comprehensive knowledge and understanding of theoretical concerns and new research in biological anthropology, human biology and behaviour.
8.2 Critically evaluate new research in biological anthropology, human biology and behaviour.
8.3 Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the internal workings for the research and publishing process in biological anthropology, human biology and behaviour.


  1. Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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