Darwin gave us the most sensational idea in biology: evolution by natural selection. But even he knew that it came with difficulties. Tracing the history of these ideas, this program uncovers the accuracy of Darwin's theories.
This BBC clip for senior high school students offers a deeper look at natural selection, including the work of Mendel and Darwin.
Presented by Steve Leonard, this series vists the crucial moments in life's journey to dominate the earth.
Teens are re-writing the rules of sex but while their bodies suddenly become adult, they're not necessarily in sync with their chief sex organ - the teen brain. Whether they're having sex or not, whether their parents like it or not, teenagers are sexual beings. Today's teens are having sex earlier, clocking up more partners and are more sexually adventurous than ever. It all starts with puberty, the human sexuality switch, but it's the teen brain that drives this change, influencing teen sex lives in surprising ways.
Jim AlKhalili visits Nur alDin Bimaristan, a medieval hospital in Damascus, examines artefacts used in Islamic medicine, and discusses religious tolerance in the hospital.
Taking a driving test is something that everyone can relate to. It is a stressful rite of passage for all young people but even more so for autistic people with low self-confidence and poor social skills. Driving represents the independence they often find so difficult to achieve in the rest of their lives. This counter intuitive film follows young characters with autism at different stages along the journey towards learning to drive including the dramatic build up to their theory and practical tests.
A tasty treat with the screening of the hilarious and touching, Fat Chance. This one-hour documentary follows a 90kg, pizza binging, single mother who is determined to lose weight and find love before her 50th birthday. Yuka Sekiguchi's weight is the result of multi-cultural assimilation. Abandoning her Japanese lifestyle, her love of "Western" fast food has turned this formerly petite woman into an overweight, pizza loving, beer swilling, Aussie chick.
Binge drinking is a teen issue that has shaken a cocktail of concern. But is this just media hype? Through a range of experiments, this second episode of Whatever! The Science Of Teens exposes the true dangers behind what used to be seen as just a harmless rite of passage.
Teenagers are in limbo. Neither adults nor children, they are caught up in a confusing world of change. Using entertaining segments and accessible language Whatever! The Science Of Teens taps into the most up-to-date scientific investigations of the teen brain, and the latest research into family and society, to reveal that much 'aberrant' teenage behaviour is really quite normal.
This documentary explores why Tyrannosaurus Rex is the scariest, meanest, most bewitching dinosaur of them all. Children have always been captivated by the sheer savagery of the teeth, experts have marvelled at the force of its bite - ten times more powerful than anything we know today and moviemakers made millions out of the terror it inspired. But could our picture of this monster be completely wrong?
Last year thousands of Brits took a 10-hour flight to the Caribbean's most popular tourist destination - the Dominican Republic. The country's budget resorts make it a popular choice with families but for an increasing number of British women the island has a different appeal. It's easy for women of all ages, shapes and sizes to have relationships with the young, handsome men who live and work on the island. From the two-part series, Manhunters a story emerges about love and loneliness across gender and cultural divides.
A fascinating insight into Australian home life as three frazzled, stressed-out families attempt to improve their work/life balance by participating in 'The Nest' experiment. We've always liked to think of ourselves as a nation of relaxed, carefree individuals who aren't inclined to let work get in the way of a good time. But does the popular image match the reality? Or is there a more confronting truth? That we've turned into a country of stressed-out workaholics, more interested in making a living than having a life.
How do our brains generate consciousness? We take it for granted that the brain makes being alive feel the way it does, but there's no reason why it should. The brain is made of the same biological ingredients as the rest of the body, and yet somehow it manages to generate the indescribable phenomenon of consciousness.
The changes in the brain during the growth and development of a baby into an adult are explored. Susan Greenfield looks at how little of the fine structure of our brains is predetermined at birth, how the connections between nerves are constantly changing in response to what we encounter in the outside world. She explains her view that learning, memory and even the process of becoming a unique individual, should all be seen as a restless brain adapting minute by minute to the environment it encounters. Life is about how the world leaves its mark on us.
What is it about the brain that has put us in charge of the planet? Were has the human unique linguistic abilities come from? Are there special structures in our brains which no other animals possess? Or is it possible that our sophisticated rich cultures are merely the result of having larger brains? Susan Greenfield explains why she believes we are truly just big brained chimps.
The illusion of vision. It feels as though we open our eyes and just see what's out there, but the more we learn about the brain's visual system, the further it seems this is from the truth. Patients, who can't see movement or recognise faces, reveal the tricks and short cuts the brain uses to construct an illusion of reality. Is the brain making up so much of what we think we're seeing that vision is really just dreaming with your eyes open?
Susan Greenfield explains why she believes all aspects of human experience will eventually be explained in terms of the physical processes of the brain. The story of how we have gradually come to understand the astonishing complexity of the brain is revealed, from the earliest crude studies of the effects of brain injury, through to the latest insights from direct stimulation of specific areas in patients undergoing brain surgery whilst wide awake. Is it possible that our most spiritual feelings are merely the result of electrical activity in the temporal lobe?
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