This unit of study has been developed by academics in the University's Charles Perkins Centre, an interdisciplinary education and research hub where researchers produce novel solutions to chronic disease. Chronic diseases are the leading cause of death, disability and reduced quality of life across the world. Generating innovative solutions to combat these global health challenges requires us to rethink our traditional approaches to their causes, where medical or biological factors are considered in isolation from their societal, and environmental contexts. In this OLE, students will learn how an approach to these challenges using evolutionary thinking can generate new ways of identifying potential solutions. Global leaders in the field will provide an insight into the topics: introduction to evolutionary thinking; life history and health; materno-fetal conflict and its longer-term health consequences; the evolution of nutrition; human variation and its health consequences, exemplified by the evolution of skin pigmentation; and an overview of the many other topics in the physiology and medicine of chronic disease that can be addressed from an evolutionary perspective. By the end of this OLE students will be able to utilise evolutionary thinking for a truly multidisciplinary approach to hypothesis development to address health challenges.
As this unit is an Open Learning Environment unit of study and is completely online, there are no attendance requirements.
(45%) Two Written Assignments, (55%) Tutorial Quizzes
There is no dedicated textbook for this unit. The unit is hosted through the University's Learning Management System (LMS) where all the resources are available, including videos, min-lectures and links to published papers.