Assistant Professor, Biology, Providence College
TEDxTufts Speaker, Embracing Science as a Verb
Storyteller, The Story Collider, A Dangerous Job
Rachael E. Bonoan, PhD
The following courses were all taught at Tufts University, Medford/Somerville campus.
Designed and taught my own class for the Tufts University Experimental College. In this seminar-style class, STEM and non-STEM students synthesize primary literature and class discussions to develop a conservation plan for their own insect pollinator, which they follow throughout the semester. See link to syllabus and assigned pollinators below.
From Bees to Beetles: Insect Pollinators and Real-World Science, EXP 0021
What does the crisis in bee populations mean for our food system? Animal pollination directly affects the yield and quality of 75% of globally important crops. Recently however, animal pollinator populations—specifically insect pollinators—are declining. What is the current state of our insect pollinators? How do insect pollinators contribute to food security? What factors contribute to the recent population decline? What can we, and the public, do to help?
The course aims to answer these questions through the study of diverse insect pollinators and nutritional ecology, with students learning how to digest research articles and use basic science to create applied solutions.
This course has been approved by the Academic Review Board to count toward Natural Sciences distribution credit.
Aided students in generation of hypotheses and methods to test those hypotheses on a 2-week long trip to Costa Rica (La Selva, Sirena), worked with students in the field to troubleshoot/modify methods as needed, analyze data, and prepare final papers/presentations.
Tropical Ecology and Conservation, BIO 181
Tropical systems are diverse, have many unique features when compared to temperate systems, and are threatened by human activities. This seminar and trip to Costa Rica is designed to provide students with an in depth understanding of tropical ecology and conservation and to enhance student research skills. During the fall semester, students will, in addition to weekly readings and discussions, give oral presentations and complete various writing assignments, including a research proposal. Over winter break students will travel to Costa Rica to carry out the proposed research, and to learn first-hand about conservation challenges and successes.
Prepared and presented a mini-lecture on concepts, led the lab exercise, facilitated discussion during the lab exercise, and graded weekly pre-lab quizzes and lab reports.
Cells And Organisms with Lab, BIO 013
An introductory course primarily for prospective biology majors. General biological principles and widely used methods related to current advances in cell and molecular biology, genetics, immunology, plant and biomedical sciences. Three lectures and one laboratory each week.
Organisms And Population with Lab, BIO 014
Forms a logical sequel to BIO 13. Selected topics in animal and plant physiology, development, genetics, and population biology, with emphasis on evolutionary mechanisms. Three lectures and one laboratory each week.
Experiments in Ecology, BIO 051
An introduction to field research in different habitats. Emphasis on acquiring skills in taxonomic identification, sampling techniques, hypothesis testing and experimental design, data analysis and interpretation, as well as oral and written communication. Opportunity for student-designed group research projects on ecological questions. One laboratory session per week plus one discussion period.
Microbiology with Lab, BIO 106
A survey of the structures and functions of microbes, including bacteria, archaea, viruses, and eukaryotic microbes (fungi, protists). Topics include microbial genetics, physiology, cell biology, diversity, evolution, ecology, and the human microbiome. Laboratory work focuses on fundamental techniques used to isolate, identify, and manipulate microbes.
Biostatistics, BIO 132
An examination of statistical methods for designing, analyzing, and interpreting biological experiments and observations. Topics include probability, parameter estimation, inference, correlation, regression, analysis of variance, and nonparametric methods.