Click on the pictures to see bios
- Laura ConnerAssistant Research Professor
Laura Conner received her Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Arizona in 2007. She has taught a variety of science courses, labs, and science education courses at the college level for over 9 years, including Communicating Science (STO601). Laura’s research focuses primarily on informal learning environments, with a special interest in broadening participation in science. She also works closely with K-12 teachers on a regular basis, and has developed and delivered professional development workshops for teachers. Conner has extensive experience in communicating science to the public through her current position and through past positions as the Director of Public Programs (education and exhibits) for the University of Alaska Museum of the North, and as a science journalist. Conner teaches STO 601, STO 603, and coordinates STO 604.
- Sarah FowellAssociate Professor of Geology
Sarah received her PhD in Geology from Columbia University in 1994. She has taught numerous courses at UAF, including introductory Geoscience (GEOS 101 / 112) and Scientific Teaching. She is also a co-instructor for GeoFORCE Alaska, a hands-on, field-based summer geoscience program for high school students from rural Alaskan communities. In 2007 she received a CNSM Outstanding Teacher Award and attended the National Academies Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education in Biology. Sarah leads annual training sessions for graduate teaching assistants on methods of instruction and holds regular faculty tutorials on the use of automated response systems and design of “clicker questions”. As Chair of the Dept. of Geology & Geophysics, she strongly supports programs that provide opportunities for graduate students develop their pedagogical skills. Sarah co-teaches STO 666.
- Denise KindInstructor, Laboratory Coordinator
Denise received her PhD in Population Genetics and Evolutionary Biology from the University of California Irvine in 2005. She has taught several courses since then, including repeated offerings of Biology and Wildlife’s Fundamentals of Biology sequence (BIOL 115X/116X) and Methods in Scientific Teaching (BIOL/CHEM/GEOS 692). She was originally trained in instructional methods during her graduate studies at UCI, and holds a secondary teaching certificate in the State of Alaska. She has participated in and led teaching workshops for faculty and graduate students and has been involved in organizing a non-credit discussion group that is the predecessor of the proposed 1 credit seminar “Current Topics in Scientific Teaching.” As Biology and Wildlife’s Laboratory Coordinator, she works closely with graduate students on a regular basis. Dr. Kind co-teaches STO 666, Scientific Teaching.
- Christa MulderProfessor of Ecology
Christa received her PhD in Biological Sciences from UAF in 1996. She has taught numerous courses at UAF, including introductory Biology (Biol. 105 / 116) and the trial offering of Scientific Teaching (as a co-instructor). Christa attended the National Academies Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education in Biology in 2008 and received a CNSM Outstanding Teacher Award in 2008. Her current research program includes a substantial education / outreach program through training of K-12 teachers in invasive plant and pollination biology, and through the establishment of a citizen science network that monitors plant phenology across the state of Alaska. Christa currently serves as a professor in the Dept. of Biology and Wildlife; in this position she has been working to increase the availability of courses that teach professional skills for graduate students. Mulder teaches STO 692, Current Topics in Scientific Teaching.
- Erin PettitAssociate Professor of Glaciology
Pettit's research is primarily focused on glacial dynamics and exploring the interactions within the ice-ocean-earth system. Pettit is a National Geographic Emerging Explorer who innovated applying acoustic research with hydrophones to calving and melting glaciers reaching the ocean, to examine ice shelf disintegration and the ice-ocean boundary. Her work has been recognized by numerous high-profile sources, including EARTH magazine, and National Geographic,and she was invited to present a TEDWomen talk, on her investigations focused on "listening" to glaciers. Her research on glacier sounds extends to how the underwater noise affects marine animals. She also created and runs the Girls on Ice program, a wilderness science program that teaches high school girls about glaciology, ecology, and mountaineering. Girls on Ice started in Washington in 1999, with Pettit taking five girls to the South Cascade Glacier. During the program, adolescent girls learn mountaineering skills, how to use GPS for glacier measurement and how to calculate the velocity of streams.