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Goose Bumps-2014 APS Video Contest

2014 Viewer's Choice Video. Video project designed towards an 8th grade audience. The video describes the presence and causation of goose bumps on the human body through the use of skits, diagrams, and illustrations. During the video, two skits provide examples of how environmental and emotional triggers (such as: the cold or fear) can cause the occurrence of goose bumps due to the release of hormones, such as Adrenaline. A diagram in the video explains how the hormones initiate the contraction of the Arrector pili muscle. Because the muscle is attached to the epidermis and the hair follicle, when the muscle contracts, the hair shaft is pulled upright and the skin around the hair follicle becomes depressed. This creates a dimple at the skin surface which forms an air pocket between the hair and the skin. Illustrations in the video portray the evolutionary purpose and benefit to developing goose bumps prehistorically. These illustrations explain how the formation of goose bumps can improve chances of survival for a prehistoric human by acting as an insulator from the cold environment and to increase the visual size of the prehistoric human to deter potential predators. These descriptions provide a hypothesis as to why we develop goose bumps today.

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Resource Type: Video
Audience Level: High School lower division (Grades 9-10), High School upper division (Grades 11-12), Undergraduate lower division (Grades 13-14), Undergraduate upper division (Grades 15-16), General Public

Author and Copyright

Authors and Editors: Derek S Burkhardt of University of New Hampshire at Manchester Dept. of Biology, Marc Stanieich of University of New Hampshire at Manchester Dept. of Biology, Joshua Linnane of University of New Hampshire at Manchester Dept. of Biology
Publisher: University of New Hampshire at Manchester Dept. of Biology
Format: text/html
Copyright and other restrictions: No
Cost: No


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