Teaching

I have more than 7 years of teaching experience in both lecture and laboratory settings. I greatly enjoy teaching and my successes as an educator are evidenced by several teaching awards. I value diversity, equity, and inclusion and I strive to emphasize these values in my teaching. As an instructor, I believe is important to recognize students as individuals with unique backgrounds and needs to help ensure they can they achieve their goals in academia and beyond. More broadly, I believe it is critically important to be anti-racist and support diversity and social justice initiatives in all walks of life, and am committed to making science and academic settings more inclusive and welcoming to students and colleagues from diverse backgrounds.

As an instructor of record, I have taught courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. I was a primary course instructor for the undergraduate course in paleontology at Ohio University (Fall 2011), which is required for students majoring in geological sciences. This course consisted of three, theory-based lectures per week and a laboratory component featuring specimen-based exercises emphasizing concepts in taxonomy, morphology, & stratigraphy. I was also a Lecturer in Comparative Biology in the Richard Gilder Graduate School (RGGS) at the American Museum of Natural History from 2019-2020. This course consisted of a weekly, 1-hour group discussions with RGGS PhD students on selected topics, including (but not limited to) evolutionary theory, paleontology & the fossil record, phylogenetic methods, and evolutionary modeling.

I also have experience teaching “hands on” analytical methods workshops, including the 2019 Paleontological Society-sponsored workshop titled “Quantitative Methods in Phylogenetic Paleobiology” held during the 2019 Geological Society of America meeting. This intensive, one-day workshop provided participants with both theoretical and “hand on” training in computer-based, Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of paleobiological data using the programming software RevBayes and R. Materials I developed for this workshop are available on the course website here and here (and listed in my CV). Similarly, I also organized and led a methods-based paleobiology workshop at the NMNH (Smithsonian Institution) in 2018. This workshop provided participants with instruction in the R programming language on fossil phylogenies, models of morphological diversification, and best practices for incorporating the fossil record into phylogenetic comparative studies.

I frequently delivered guest lectures for introductory courses while at Ohio State, and have experience lecturing on topics ranging from plate tectonics, sedimentology & stratigraphy, biological evolution, and climate change. Similarly, most lab-based courses I taught while a Graduate Teaching Associate involved preparing my own ~30-60 minute lecture twice a week, and then spending several hours working with students directly as they develop “hands on” experience. I have also worked with students in field settings teaching courses in sedimentology & stratigraphy and led field trips on Ohio geology.

Additional information regarding my teaching experience (including a list of courses taught) is provided in my CV.