MCAT Content / Culture / Evolution And Human Culture

Evolution and Human Culture

Topic: Culture

Sociocultural evolution is a set of theories that describes the processes through which societies and cultures have progressed over time.

Evolution both influences and is influenced by culture. Sociocultural evolution is an umbrella term for theories regarding cultural revolution and social evolution and examines how cultures and societies have developed over time. Individual behavior and social structures experience continuous transformation in response to their complex needs. Sociologists argue these chases are the result of social factors (i.e. social interactions) rather than biological ones. Sociocultural evolution focuses on how human minds evolved for people to succeed as beings with natural social tendencies. Historical studies have discovered thousands of societies throughout time; today, only hundreds remain as a result of natural growths and declines.

Culture can be treated as a product of evolution over time as people in groups and communities have come together to form strong attachments and communications through social norms. But culture can also be seen as a driver of evolution through the incorporation of technology which withdraws selection pressures from humans allowing changes in morphology over time.


Key Points

• Evolution both influences and is influenced by culture.

• Sociocultural evolution is a set of theories that describes the processes through which societies and cultures have progressed over time.

• Sociocultural evolution focuses on how human minds evolved for people to succeed as beings with natural social tendencies.


Key Terms

culture: can be thought of as all the beliefs, assumptions, objects, behaviors, and processes that make up a shared way of life

evolution: the change in the characteristics of a species over several generations; relies on the process of natural selection

sociocultural evolution: an umbrella term referring to the cultural revolution and social evolution theories that examine how cultures and societies have developed over time

social norms: informal understandings that govern the behavior of members of a society

selection pressure: any cause that reduces reproductive success in a portion of a population



Billing Information
We had trouble validating your card. It's possible your card provider is preventing us from charging the card. Please contact your card provider or customer support.
{{ cardForm.errors.get('number') }}
{{ registerForm.errors.get('zip') }}
{{ registerForm.errors.get('coupon') }}
Tax: {{ taxAmount(selectedPlan) | currency spark.currencySymbol }}

Total Price Including Tax: {{ priceWithTax(selectedPlan) | currency spark.currencySymbol }} / {{ selectedPlan.interval | capitalize }}