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Arizona State University

Human Origins

Arizona State University via edX


This course is part of Global Freshman Academy (GFA), which means you can earn transferable ASU credit toward your college degree.

This course will guide you through an exploration of the scientific evidence for the evolution of humans and our fossil relatives and humankind’s place in the natural world. It includes an introduction to evolutionary theory, an overview of the hominin fossil record and what that record teaches us about our place in nature. Dr. Donald Johanson, a world-renowned paleoanthropologist who found the skeleton known as Lucy, will present an exciting in-depth exploration of paleoanthropological field research from his unique perspective.

This course satisfies the Social-behavioral sciences (SB) general studies requirement at Arizona State University. This course may satisfy a general education requirement at other institutions; however, it is strongly encouraged that you consult with your institution of choice to determine how these credits will be applied to their degree requirements prior to transferring the credit.


Click to view the complete course syllabus here.

Taught by

Dr. Donald C. Johanson

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4.7 rating, based on 6 reviews

Start your review of Human Origins

  • Kristina Šekrst completed this course and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    This is one of the best MOOCs on the internet. The discoverer of Lucy - doctor Donald Johanson - delivers a lecture on human evolution, our primate ancestors, higher primates, and finally Homo, in a great teaching style. You'll feel as if you were in...
  • Valorie Hamachek

    Valorie Hamachek completed this course, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be hard.

    Absolutely fascinating course. The Professor is highly qualified to teach - he discovered Lucy! The lectures flow nicely and I came away with a very good understanding about evolution.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course, spending 5 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be hard.

    I have always had an interest in paleoanthropology but because my science knowledge is very weak I have often shied away from delving deeper into it. This course was a wonderful springboard, offering a gentle introduction to the scientific nomenclature and theories within the field. I found it challenging but fascinating.
  • Matthew Philip

    Matthew Philip completed this course.

  • Ramon Füglister completed this course.

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