• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Critically consider evolutionary explanations for human intelligence.

Extracts from this document...


Critically consider evolutionary explanations for human intelligence Intelligence is a hard word to define. Eysenck defined intelligence as 'the all-round mental abilities or thinking skills either of human or of lower species.' These include problem solving, reasoning, predicting events, memory and language. Another definition of intelligence is 'the ability to adapt, survive and thrive in response to changing environmental demands. Taking both these definitions of intelligence, we can deduce that human intelligence must be a development from the lower species, and the greater the ability to problem solve, reason, predict events, remember and use language the more evolved the intelligence. Evolutionary explanations for intelligence fall into two categories - the ecological explanation and the social explanation. ...read more.


It has been argued that the use of tools in life shows the evolution of human intelligence. Two and a half million years ago, humans used chipped rocks as tools, one million years ago humans developed hand axes, and 200,000 years ago there was a dramatic increase in the amount of tools humans used. This does mirror the view that human intelligence is evolving; yet human intelligence has been evolving from over three million years ago, so this does not explain why such a dramatic increase in tool use took place only a relatively short time ago. Tool use therefore, does not explain the evolution of human intelligence. Hunting is another area of human life that it has been argued shows our evolution. ...read more.


Groups can also evolve strategies for hunting, survival and sexual behaviour that will benefit them. Pack animals, such as wolves, hunt in groups, which means they can hunt larger prey. The downside to this is, however, there are more people to share it with. Herd animals, such as gazelles, stick together in groups, making it harder for predators to attack them. Colony animals, like bees, have a Queen who will mate and pass on the genes from the colony, seeing as the colony all share the same genes. Workers can therefore be sterile and still work for the benefit of the colony, and still their genes will be passed on. The evolution of communication strategies, such as language, enables groups to deal with anti-social animals, form alliances and plan strategies. Therefore language will be selected for. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Genetics, Evolution & Biodiversity section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Genetics, Evolution & Biodiversity essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Nature vs. Nurture - And its affect on intelligence, personality, and behavior

    4 star(s)

    From the same experiment at Northwestern University discussed earlier, it was also found that genes increase the production of the production of proteins. These are proteins that are found in organs like the kidney and the brain. For example dopamine is a chemical that creates sensations of pleasure in response to intense experiences.

  2. Investigate how the height to width ratio of Limpets varies with distance from sea

    * Measurements were taken of 4 Limpets in each quadrat every 2 meters. If there were an insufficient number of limpets to record information from within the quadrat, I worked horizontally at the same distance from the sea to obtain results.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work