The Selfish Gene Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What behavior does the author cite about how elephant seals relate to rivals?
(a) Elephant seals steal mates away from the strongest rival.
(b) Elephant seals wait for the strongest rival to die or become too old.
(c) Elephant seals group together to attack the strongest rival.
(d) Elephant seals kill increasingly difficult rivals until they are killed.

2. In early reproducing molecules, what is the measure of "success"?
(a) That there are more chemical reactions that can use the molecule.
(b) That there are fewer ways for the molecule to be destroyed.
(c) That there are more molecules around that are like the molecule.
(d) That there are more copies of the molecule, whether they are accurate or not.

3. Does the author believe that genetically inherited traits cannot be changed?
(a) No, he does not believe genetically inherited traits are impossible to change.
(b) No, he believes that genetically inherited traits are only vague predispositions that are easily and commonly changed.
(c) Yes, he believes that genetically inherited traits are unchangeable, but they don't govern all behavior.
(d) Yes, he believes genetically inherited traits cover all behavior and are unchangeable.

4. In the set of bees Dawkins mentions that deal with this disease, what does a second gene the bees have do?
(a) Cause the bees to leave the hive where sick baby bees are.
(b) Cause the bees to throw sick baby bees out of the hive.
(c) Cause the bees to eat sick baby bees.
(d) Cause the bees to crush sick baby bees.

5. What apparently selfish act of the praying mantis does the author describe?
(a) Injuring another mantis that enters a claimed territory.
(b) Leading another mantis into a spider's web.
(c) A female eating her mate.
(d) Fighting over an aphid colony.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is the most stable type of behavior in the computer simulations of ESS?

2. In Dawkins' examine of ESS simulations, what two kinds of creatures are there?

3. In Dawkins' discussion, what does he consider alleles to be, relative to genes?

4. How does Dawkins define communication?

5. Does the author believe that all people should act selfishly?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do genes directly and indirectly control behavior?

2. What results in variety in Dawkins' view of early self-copying molecules?

3. Explain Dawkins' argument for why cannibalism is very rare.

4. In Dawkins' metaphor about DNA, what is the role of page numbers?

5. What does Dawkins say about how genes "teach" a behavior to a bee?

6. Describe "crossing over."

7. Explain why Dawkins speculates that cannibalism might make sense within his selfish gene theory.

8. What does Dawkins say would happen if a selfish member of a species were born into a species of unselfish members?

9. What does Dawkins say would be a natural extension of valuing one's own species more than other species?

10. What happens to genes in sexual reproduction?

(see the answer keys)

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