Review Questions

Based on your reading and the above exercise, complete the following questions.

  1. What is bipedalism?
  2. What is habitual or obligate bipedalism? How is it different from facultative bipedalism? For what reason(s) would a quadruped use the bipedal form of locomotion?
  3. What are the earliest fossil hominins to show physical evidence of bipedalism?
  4. What are some of the theories put forward by scientist for the evolution of bipedalism? Which one do you think is the most plausible and why? Do you think there is more than one?
  5. What are the anatomical features indicative of bipedalism? How do those features differ from a quadruped?
  6. Based on the information you have recorded in your exercise, did bipedalism evolve before or after an increase in brain size? In what way could brain size have been affected by bipedalism?
  7. What features, if any, are unique to australopithecines in comparison to modern humans and chimpanzees? What might these features indicate?