E3 Innate & Learned Behaviour

Essential Biology E3: Innate and Learned Behaviour


To what extent is human behaviour innate in nature?

Watch this video from the California Academy of Sciences’ Science in Action series: Facial Expressions

  • What is the effect of the observer on human behaviour when they know they are being observed?
  • Why do the blind olympians provide a good sample population for the study?
  • What conclusions could be drawn from the investigation? Why?


Taxis and Kinesis:

Learning Animations and Tutorials:

Jim pranks Dwight on The Office:


Operant Conditioning: nice examples from the Big Bang Theory


Indiana Univerity Song Learning in Cowbirds: Social effect on birdsong:


TED Talk: Training Rats to Sniff out Landmines!:

Cuckoos take advantage of reed warblers’ innate caring for chicks – to offload childcare!


TED Talk: I am my Connectome. How do we learn? How does that mould who were are? What is going on inside that brain of ours? Find out:

Here’s a nice TED Talk on how games reward the brain. Think about how your game-playing (or other immersive pastimes) motivate you through rewards and reinforcement.

Which is more intelligent – a dog or a baby?

  1. Hi Stephen,
    I use your powerpoints and Essential Bio study guides to review in my Bio HL class…THANK YOU! I’m starting to teach the Option E this week, but the files on slideshare for all except the E3 topic are damaged and I couldn’t download them. Could you email them to me or I guess try to re-upload to slideshare?
    I’d really appreciate it, I love all of your links and photos and haven’t taught this Option in the past so need all the resources I can get my hands on.
    Thanks so much,

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