2023 Fall

Classes are free  with your  UMASC Membership


Origins of Human Evolution

Semester 1 of 2

Instructor: Bill Portela

Tuesdays • 8 classes – 9/19-11/7 • 3:00-5:00 PM

Class size 5-24 students
15 seats remaining
Location: Jewett 289
Note: 10/24 class held in Jewett 293

Origins of Human Evolution, is a seminar style course which tells the biological story of the creation of human life on Earth. The first semester of this two-semester course introduces the basic concepts of Darwin’s natural selection and sexual selection of species. We examine the nature of instinctual behaviors for applicability to our own culture. Overviews on the workings of geology and the formation of our solar system allow us to explore the creation of the first living molecules within Earth’s ancient oceans. We then explore how an extraordinary fusion between two biological kingdoms catapulted life onto the land.

The second semester of this two-semester course will be offered in the spring of 2024. 

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This two semester course
is based on Bill Portela's book,
Origins of Human Evolution.

Bill Portela has taught at every learning level in Maine, from elementary to university. He has been a volunteer teacher at the alternative, Evergreen Sudbury school in Hallowell. For the last 6 years he has been working on a book on evolution, which forms the basis of this class.