TEACHING & MENTORING

Teaching

Introduction to Animal Behavior (EEB 3411), Instructor of Record

University of Minnesota, Fall 2016

Introduction to Animal Behavior (EEB 3411), Teaching Assistant/Lab Instructor and Course Administrator

University of Minnesota, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015*

*Nominated by students for the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award in Fall 2015

Foundations of Biology (BIOL 2004), Teaching Assistant/Lab Instructor

University of Minnesota, Fall 2012*, Spring 2014

*Received the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award in Fall 2012 through student nomination

General Ecology (BIOL 2251), Teaching Assistant/Lab Instructor

East Carolina University, Summer 2012

Principles of Biology (BIOL 1101), Teaching Assistant/Lab Instructor

East Carolina University, Summer 2012

General Biology (BIOL 1051), Teaching Assistant/Lab Instructor

East Carolina University, Fall 2009, Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Spring 2012

 

Mentoring

I have served as a research mentor for undergraduate students at the University of Minnesota, the University of Guyana, and East Carolina University. I find mentoring students who are working on independent research projects to be one of the the most rewarding experiences for an educator. As an undergraduate, I had some great research opportunities and it was these experiences that motivated me to become a scientist. I think students learn more when they are motivated by curiosity and take ownership over their research projects, and involving students in on-going original research is the best way to accomplish that goal.

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Emily Engelbrecht-Wiggans in the lab measuring frog color variation

 

Emily Engelbrecht-Wiggans, University of Minnesota

Emily is researching ‘reverse’ sexual dichromatism in golden rocket frogs, a species in which females are more brightly colored than males! She is merging her interests in biology and photography by using calibrated photographs and Adobe Photoshop to quantify color variation in this species. Emily is working on a writing intensive directed research project and will submit her research paper for publication to a scientific journal.

 

Shannon Pappas, University of Minnesota

Shannon conducted a directed research project using sound analysis software to measure the acoustic properties of golden rocket frog (Anomaloglossus beebei) and Kai rocket frog (A. kaiei) advertisement calls. These data complement the results of field playback experiments that quantified aggressive responses of male frogs to the same calls, and are being used to test for associations between acoustic properties and aggressive responses.

 

Alexander Kaplan, University of Minnesota

Alex conducted a directed research project using sound analysis software to measure the acoustic properties of wood frog (Rana sylvatica) calls. He quantified variation both within and among individuals in acoustic properties. These data can be used to investigate patterns of within- and among-individual variation in acoustic signals across different species of frogs.

 

Krystal Peters, University of Minnesota

Krystal conducted a directed research project measuring the acoustic properties of brilliant-thighed poison frog (Allobates femoralis) advertisement calls. These data were used to quantity within- and among-individual variation in acoustic signals, and were used to complement results of a field playback experiment that tested the aggressive responses of male A. femoralis to the calls of familiar and unfamiliar individuals.

 

Mahendra Doraisami, University of Guyana

Mahendra assisted in field research at Kaieteur National Park in Guyana, studying the vocal communication and social behavior of two species of rocket frogs. He has contributed to a large data set of acoustic recordings and a long-term study of the territorial behavior of these species.

 

Michael Anderson, University of Minnesota

Michael conducted a directed research project using sound analysis software to quantify the acoustic properties of spring peeper (Pseudacris crucifer) advertisement calls. These data were used to quantify within- and among-individual variation in acoustic signals and are being used to guide field playback experiments in this species aimed at investigating behavioral plasticity of aggressive signalling.

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Calvin Giddings, University of Guyana, recording frog calls in the field

 

Calvin Giddings, University of Guyana

Calvin worked with me in the field in Kaieteur National Park, in Guyana, studying vocal communication and social behavior of two species of rocket frogs. Calvin is an expert frog catcher! Data he collected has contributed to a large data set of acoustic recordings and a long-term study of the territorial behavior of rocket frogs.

 

Laura Jackson, East Carolina University

Laura learned a variety of lab techniques including DNA extraction and PCR DNA amplification. Laura amplified microsatellite loci of DNA extracted from tissue samples of mimic poison frogs (Ranitomeya imitator) to run parentage analysis of tadpoles. These data allowed us to confirm relatedness of parents and offspring in a study on parental care in mimic poison frogs, and to confirm that pairs observed in the field were in fact genetically monogamous. The data she helped collect were used in a scientific paper on biparental care and monogamy in mimic poison frogs (Tumulty et al., 2014).