Research

CURRENT

Conservation Genetics: Currently I have shifted gears slightly (see previous research below) and I am now addressing research questions related to conservation genetics.  Specifically, I am assessing population genetic issues raised by translocation strategies using next-generation sequencing.  The taxon of interest is the federally threatened bog turtle (Glyptemys muhlenbergii).

Biology Education: I also actively engage in biology education research.  I am currently working on three studies: (1)Read the Room: are instructor assumptions about student perceptions accurate and how we can use such information to improve student learning [Link], (2) Are all active learning approaches created equal: in regards to student engagement and learning [Link], and (3) Likert – does it scale: the utility and limitations of Likert-type response data.

PREVIOUS

Biological Invasions: Previous work has addressed a wide range of topics related to biological invasions; behavioral responses of native species to invasions, the role of legislation on the spread of invasive species, and how genetic techniques can be used to explore the mechanisms of spread.  I focused on the invasion of rusty crayfish (Orconectes rustics) in the Upper Susquehanna River Basin in New York.

Phenotypic plasticity: Initially, my research focused on phenotypic plasticity in Monarch butterflies, specifically I used temperature chambers in the laboratory to determine the timing of the sensitive period for black pigmentation. The proportion of black pigmentation may be an important characteristic determining the metabolic rate and the rate of development.

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