Teaching

COURSES

Biological Oceanography (MS102N)

Introductory course designed for Marine Science majors. Material covers the physical, chemical and geological processes that influence biological productivity as well as the distribution, abundance and adaptations of marine life in various environments of the world's oceans. In the laboratory component of this course, students participate in field trips to local marine ecosystems, including seagrass beds, shoals, and mangrove coastlines, and they learn basic experimental design, methods, and hypothesis testing. No prerequisites.

Marine Invertebrate Biology (MS289)

Functional morphology, biology, diversity, and evolutionary relationships of the major marine invertebrate groups, with emphasis on the local area. This course provides multiple opportunities to explore the tremendous diversity of local marine invertebrates in the Tampa Bay area. Given our waterfront location and the resources at the campus waterfront complex, we have direct access to oyster reefs, sea grass beds, sandbars, mudflats and mangroves to collect, observe, and study living invertebrates. In addition to these hands-on and field-based experiences, you will also learn to apply the scientific method in observational and experimental studies in the lab, and explore some of the remarkable evolutionary adaptations of invertebrates to their surrounding environment. Prerequisites: MS 102N and sophomore standing.

Coral Reefs (MS322)

An integrated overview of reef structure and development, and the physiology, ecology, and behavior of coral-reef organisms. The materials in this lecture only course cover a range of habitats and organisms and how their interplay lead to the success of coral reefs. Emphasis will also be given to the threats facing coral reefs in a changing environmental landscape and the future outlook of reefs worldwide. Prerequisites: MS 101N, MS 102N.

Comparative Animal Physiology (BI314)

Advanced level course covering physiological mechanisms of animals and general principles revealed through application of comparative experimental methods. The material in lectures and lab cover a range of organisms, including humans, arthropods, molluscs, annelids, and even their symbiotic bacterial residents. Each student in this course conducts a creative lab research project to hone their advanced research skills. Prerequisites: BI 202, CH 122, and Junior or Senior standing.

Marine Science Senior Seminar: Marine Symbioses (MS2 410)

This senior seminar focuses on symbiotic relationships in the marine environment. The course consists of weekly student-led presentations and discussions of recent research articles in a journal club format. Prerequisites: Senior standing, MS majors.

Tropical Marine Ecology - Belize (WTI-4E)

Studying in Belize offers a unique opportunity to explore ecological and evolutionary principles, with an emphasis on examples from tropical marine habitats, including coral reefs, seagrass beds, and mangroves. After a brief orientation, we will travel to Belize and begin at the Blue Creek Rainforest Preserve, where students will have opportunity to hike in the rainforest, explore limestone caves, and interact with local communities. We will then travel to South Water Caye Marine Reserve. Students will become familiar with techniques used in field studies of shallow marine ecosystems and conduct independent research projects on an array of topics related to coral-reef habitats. This is an intensive field-based course and good swimming skills and snorkeling abilities are required.

Captive Oceans (AT18 - 2019)

Humans have been captivated by the mysteries of the oceans for centuries but it was not until the invention of the aquarium in the nineteenth century that the oceans were truly domesticated. A history of obsession, discovery, and delight shows how aquariums evolved from tools for scientific observation to great public aquariums and aquatic parks, popular in cities around the world. In this class, we will explore the evolution of aquarium conservation and science education by emphasizing the historical, scientific, and ethical traditions that have shaped these efforts. Along the way, we will discuss the successful research and conservation practices as well as the controversial aspects of public aquariums. We will also assess the current and future roles of these institutions in the face of rapid global change through in-depth case studies and tours of local aquariums in Tampa Bay.

Microbial Meals (WT 6N) - co-taught with Prof. Liza Conrad (WT 2022)

Microbes have been an essential component of food production by humans for millennia. In this course, we will explore the history of the use of microbes in food production across different geographic and cultural regions of the world, spanning from ancient cultures to modern-day industrial United States. We'll discuss, make, and/or eat foods that rely on microbes for production and preservation. These foods include salame, yogurt, sourdough bread, kombucha, Swiss cheese, kimchi, sauerkraut, and so much more! The class readings and discussions will address the microbiology and current trends in fermented foods, and the importance of microbes to human health. Students will even learn how to ferment some of their own food and will use classical microbiology lab techniques to isolate fermentative bacteria from the foods that they prepare, in order to get to know the bacteria in their foods.



Photo Credit: Anna Bilich '19