This version of the course guide is provisional until the period for editing the new course guides ends.

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Prehistory I: Human Origins

Code: 106091 ECTS Credits: 6
Degree Type Year Semester
2500241 Archaeology FB 1 1


Raquel Piqué Huerta

Use of Languages

Principal working language:
catalan (cat)
Some groups entirely in English:
Some groups entirely in Catalan:
Some groups entirely in Spanish:


Raquel Piqué Huerta


There is not prerequisits official

Objectives and Contextualisation

The subject is part of the basic knowledge of History of the Degree in Archaeology. The
subject has a very broad geographical and chronological perspective, from the first
hominization processes to the present. The specificity of the primary sources of
knowledge, archaeology and archives, prints a marked interdisciplinary character to the
ways of approaching these stages of the humanity development. For this reason, the main
objective of the subject is that students know the fundamental processes of the stages of
history, but that they can also understand how this knowledge has been generated and
that they are in a position to evaluate the different interpretative models. On the other
hand, it is intended to emphasize the relevance of these social and economic processes
for the understanding of the current world situation. Teachers expect from students to be
able to understand phenomena such as sexual division of labour, social discrimination.


  • Contextualizing and analysing historical processes.
  • Students must be capable of collecting and interpreting relevant data (usually within their area of study) in order to make statements that reflect social, scientific or ethic relevant issues.
  • Students must have and understand knowledge of an area of study built on the basis of general secondary education, and while it relies on some advanced textbooks it also includes some aspects coming from the forefront of its field of study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Identifying the context of the historical processes.
  2. Mastering and identifying the history of immediate environment.
  3. Organising and planning the search of historical information.


UNIT 1. The process of hominization. Human evolution and its protagonists. Technology, subsistence and social organization of the first hominids

UNIT 2. - Modern humanity. The debate on the origin and expansion of modern humans. The prehistoric colonisations. Technology, social organization and subsistence of the hunter-gatherer societies of the Middle and Upper Pleistocene.

UNIT. 3- The crisis of the Palaeolithic world . The latest hunter-gatherer societies and the causes of their transformations.

UNIT 4.- The origin of food production, The emergence of farming societies. Technological innovation and new forms of social organization.


Directed activities

• Theoretical classes led by the teachers with Moodle support.

• Group work sessions and debates led by the teaching staff. Evaluation and collective discussion of textual or audio-visual material, individual and / or collective class presentations.

• Outdoor activities in museums and archaeological sites

Supervised activities

• Concerted sessions to resolve doubts about the development of the subject. Individual or small group advising sessions on specific content of the subject.

• Advice in small groups for the preparation of presentations and assignments.

• Individual or advising sessions sessions online and through Moodle.

Autonomous activity

• Personal study. Reading of texts. Search of bibliographic information

• Writing of papers. Preparation of presentations, oral comments and debates

Annotation: Within the schedule set by the centre or degree programme, 15 minutes of one class will be reserved for students to evaluate their lecturers and their courses or modules through questionnaires.


Title Hours ECTS Learning Outcomes
Type: Directed      
Theoretical classes 40 1.6
Type: Supervised      
Concerted sessions 20 0.8
Type: Autonomous      
Personal study or reading of texts 75 3


The continuous evaluation system will be organized in three modules; each one will be assigned a specific weight in the final grade:

1. The directed activities (theoretical classes) account for 50%. The evaluation of theoretical knowledge will be done by means of 2 written tests (each one will account for 25% of the final qualification)

2. Supervised activities (tutoring) and attendance will be weighted with 10%.

3. Autonomous activities will account for the remaining 40%. The evaluation will be made from the presentation of two written essays.


 Evaluation calendar

At the beginning of the course students will be informed of the deadlines for completion / delivery of the assignments and the date of the written test

 Requirements to pass the subject

• Presentation / completion of the evaluation exercises within the established deadlines.

• Achieve an average score of the evaluation exercises of five or more on a scale of 10

• A student will be considered not presented if he does not deliver or submit to one or more of the assessment modules within the established deadlines.

 Grading Review

 At the time of completion/delivery of each assessment activity, the teacher will inform (Moodle, SIA) of the procedure and date of revision of the grades.


•Students who have performed / presented supervised and autonomous activities within the established deadlines and have a minimum mark of 3.5.

 Conditions for the rating ‘Not evaluable’:

The student will be classified as Non-evaluable when he/she has delivered less than 30% of the evaluation assignments.


In the event of a student committing any irregularity that may lead to a significant variation in the grade awarded to an assessment activity, the student will be given a zero for this activity, regardless of any disciplinary process that may take place. In the event of several irregularities in assessment activities of the same subject, the student will be given a zero as the final grade for this subject.

 Reassessment calendar

The Faculty of Letters sets the re-evaluation dates. These dates are published on the website of the faculty in the month of July of the previous year. It is the responsibility of the students to know the date that corresponds to the revaluation of their subject. The last test of the continuous evaluation will be scheduled at least one week before the revaluation date.

Assessment Activities

Title Weighting Hours ECTS Learning Outcomes
Attendance and activities in the classroom 10% 5 0.2 2, 1, 3
Exam 50% 5 0.2 2, 1, 3
Written essays 40% 5 0.2 2, 1, 3



AGUSTÍ, Jordi., ANTÓN, Mauricio. 2013. La gran migración. La evolución humana más allá de África. Crítica, Barcelona.

BARKER, Graeme 2006. The agricultura Revolution in Prehistory: Why Did Foragers Become Farmers?. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

CELA CONDE, Camilo José. y AYALA, Francisco José 2013. Evolución Humana. El camino hacia nuestra especie. Alianza editorial, Madrid.

EIROA, Jorge Juan 2010. Prehistoria del mundo. Sello Editorial, Madrid.

LEWIN, Roger; FOLEY, Robert 2013. Principles of Human Evolution. Wiley-Blackwell.

LÓPEZ GARCÍA. Pilar (coord.) 2017. La Prehistoria en la Península Ibérica. Istmo, Madrid.

MENÉNDEZ, Mario (coord) 2012. Prehistoria antigua de la Península Ibérica. UNED, Madrid

ROSAS, Antonio 2016. La evolución del género ‘Homo’. CSIC-Catarata, Madrid.



ADOVASIO, James, SOFFER, Olga., PAGE, Jake. 2008. El sexo invisible. Lumen, Barcelona.

ÁLVAREZ FERNÁNDEZ, Esteban., BLANCO GONZÁLEZ, Antonio, RIVERO VILÁ, Olivia 2020. Prehistoria de la Península Ibérica. Ediciones Universidad Salamanca. Salamanca.

ARSUAGA, Juan Luis 1999. El collar del Neandertal: En busca de los primeros pensadores. Ed. Temas de hoy. Madrid.

BERMÚDEZ DE CASTRO, José María, 2021. Dioses y mendigos: la gran odisea de la evolución humana. Editorial Planeta, Barcelona.

BINFORD, Lewis R. 1988. En busca del pasado. Ed. Crítica, Barcelona.

DÍEZ MARTÍN, Fernando 2006.: El largo viaje. Arqueología de los orígenes humanos y las primeras migraciones. Bellaterra. Barcelona.

FINLAYSON, Clive. 2020 El neandertal inteligente. Arte rupestre, captura de aves y revolución cognitiva. Editorial Almuzara, Córdoba.

JOHNSON, Allen W., EARLE, Timothy 2003. La evolución de las sociedades humanas. Ed. Ariel Prehistoria.

MARTINEZ-NAVARRO, Bienvenido 2020. El Sapiens asesino y El Ocaso De los Neandertales. Almuzara, Córdoba.

PÄÄBO, Svante. 2015. El hombre de Neandertal: en busca de genomas perdidos. Alianza, Madrid.

PATOU-MATHIS, Marylene 2021. El hombre prehistórico es también una mujer. Una historia de la invisibilidad de las mujeres. Lumen, Barcelona.

RICHARDS, M. BRITTON, K. 2020. Archaeological Science: An Introduction. Cambridge University Press

RIPOLL LÓPEZ, Sergio (coord.) 2020. Prehistoria I: las primeras etapas de la humanidad. Editorial Universitaria Ramón Areces: Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia.

ROSAS, Antonio. 2015. Los primeros homininos. Paleontologia humana. CSIC-Catarata, Madrid.

ROSAS GONZÁLEZ, Antonio. 2019. Los fósiles de nuestra evolución: un viaje por los yacimientos paleontológicos que explican nuestro pasado como especie. Editorial Ariel, Barcelona.

SANCHIDRIÁN, José Luis 2012, Manual de arte prehistórico. Ariel Prehistoria, Barcelona.

TORRE, Ignacio. DE LA 2008. La Arqueología de los Orígenes humanos en África. Akal, Madrid



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