Criminologists, like scientists generally, agree that life resulted from a process of natural selection. But most do not use that information when studying what crime is and why it exists. In this course, you will learn the process of natural selection and how it can be used to make sense of criminal behaviour.
We will use the theory of evolution to make sense of a broad range of crimes including several types of homicide, child abuse and neglect, spousal assault and group level aggression such as warfare, hooliganism, rioting, and gang fights.
What will I learn?
What natural selection is and how to predict what it will do
The definition of “biological functionality” and some of the common misconceptions about it
Some of the basic lessons we can learn about our species and crime from an understanding of Darwinian theory
Why kin murder is so rare, but the reasons it does occur
Some of the reasons infanticide and child neglect occur
The origins of jealousy and its relationship to spousal homicides
The characteristics of a “typical” homicide
Why status is so important and how it relates to aggression
War and warriorship, and examples from across the animal kingdom
How natural selection rewards warfare
How pathogens relate to war in the modern world
This course requires approximately 2 - 4 hours of study per week, but can vary depending on the student. This includes watching videos, and taking quizzes and assessments.
If you pass this course you'll receive a Certificate of Achievement. While this certificate isn't a formal qualification or credit, you can use it to demonstrate your interest in learning about this area to potential employers or educational institutions.
Where could this lead me?
If you're wondering what your future could look like in this area, here are some potential careers you could head towards.
MOOCs stand for Massive Open Online Courses. These arefree online courses from universities around the world (eg. StanfordHarvardMIT) offered to anyone with an internet connection.
How do I register?
To register for a course, click on "Go to Class" button on the course page. This will take you to the providers website where you can register for the course.
How do these MOOCs or free online courses work?
MOOCs are designed for an online audience, teaching primarily through short (5-20 min.) pre recorded video lectures, that you watch on weekly schedule when convenient for you. They also have student discussion forums, homework/assignments, and online quizzes or exams.
This course is really intriguing . The lecturer uses an interdisciplinary approach (biology & anthropology) to reveal why infanticide, siblicide, mariticide take place, and argue why humans are somewhat innately violent.
Marie Labradorecompleted this course, spending 1 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be very easy.
The lectures were good but I found the course a bit short with wanting more information. It was not a challenge at all, but a good course if you were just wanting to quickly learn some new information.