Student Research in Biology & Earth Science

Biology & Earth Science students can participate in undergraduate research with faculty as part of our Honors, Distinction, or Departmental Research programs, and there are multiple opportunities for research funding at Otterbein.  These undergraduate research projects are showcased during our departmental Senior Research Symposium, and we recognize excellent work with department achievement awards.  In addition, students often present their research at regional or national meetings where they sometimes win national awards.  Ultimately, we hope to see faculty and student research culminating in a published, peer-reviewed, journal article.  Below are a few examples of undergraduate projects that were published.

Peer-reviewed publications by Otterbein students working with department faculty

Jackson, K., A.M. Young & J. Ayala. 2019. Social interactions and the role of kin recognition within juveniles of a solitary species, the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). Invited submission, special edition of the Journal of Zoo and Aquarium Research, 7(4): 179-185.

Bennett, J. A., Kandell, G. V., Kirk, S. G., McCormick, J. R. Visual and Microscopic Evaluation of Streptomyces Developmental Mutants. J. Vis. Exp. (139), e57373, doi:10.3791/57373 (2018).

Bouchard, S.S., O’Leary, C.J.*, Wargelin, L.J.*, Charbonnier, J.F., and K. Warkentin. 2016. Post-metamorphic carry-over effects of larval digestive plasticity. Functional Ecology. 30(3):379-388  DOI: 10.1111/1365-2435.12501

Bouchard, S.S., O’Leary, C.J.*, Wargelin, L.J.*, Rodriguez, W.B.*, Jennings, K.X.*, Warkentin K.M. 2015. Alternative competition-induced digestive strategies yield equal growth, but constrain compensatory growth in red-eyed treefrog larvae. Journal of Experimental Zoology Part A Ecological Genetics and Physiology.  323(10):778-788 DOI: 10.1002/jez.1991

O’Callaghan, D. K.*, Schall, S.A.*, Birmingham, S.S.W. and Lehman, J.S.  2015. Protective effects of ascorbic acid and α-Tocopherol on the in vitro oxidation of equine erythrocytes caused by extracts of wilted red maple leaves.  Journal of Equine Veterinary Science: 940 – 946.

Hull, T.D.*, Min-Hyung Ryu, M. J. Sullivan*, N.T. Klena*, R.C. Johnson*, R.M. Geiger*, M. Gomelsky and J.A.   Bennett.  2012.  C-di-GMP Phosphodiesterases RmdA and RmdB are Involved in Regulating Colony Morphology and Development in Streptomyces coelicolor.  Journal of Bacteriology.  194:4642-51.

Lescinsky, H., Titus, B.*, & Hubbard, D. 2012.  Live coral cover in the fossil record: an example from Holocene reefs of the Dominican Republic. Coral Reefs 31, 335–346.

Bouchard, S.S., Murphy, A.K.*, and Berry, J.A.* 2010. Non-additive dietary effects and ontogenetic diet shifts in slider turtles, Trachemys scriptaComparative Biochemistry and Physiology A-Molecular and Integrative Physiology Part A.  155:264-270.

Lehman, J. S., Igarashi, S.*, and Oudemans, P. V. 2007. Host resistance to Monilinia vaccinii-corymbosi in flowers and fruits of highbush blueberry.  Plant Disease 91:852-856.

Whitehill, J. A. G.*, Lehman, J. S., and Bonello, P. 2007.  Ips pini (Curculionidae: Scolytinae) is a vector of the fungal pathogen, Sphaeropsis sapinea (Coelomycetes), to Austrian pines, Pinus nigra (Pinaceae).  Environmental Entomology 36:114-120.

Lehman, J. S., Hanson, K. A*., and Shaner, G. 2005. Relationship among genes conferring partial resistance to leaf rust (Puccinia triticina) in wheat lines CI 13227 and L-574-1. Phytopathology 95:198-205.

Testa, A., Schilb, M.*, Lehman, J.S., Bonello, P. and Cristinzio, G.  2005.  First report of Phytophthora insolita and P. inflata on rhododendron in Ohio.  Plant Disease 89 (10): 1128-1128.

Funding Resources Available

  • Student Research Fund Research Award
  • Student Research Fund Presentation Award
  • University Research and Creative Works Summer Stipend (contact the Director of Undergraduate Research and Creative Work)
  • Five Cardinal Experiences Funding
  • The Bert and Jane Horn Endowed Student Research Fund in the Sciences (See Department of Biology & Earth Science for details. Applications due spring semester)
  • Melinda S. Phinney Fund for Pre-Medical Experiences (contact Dr. Lisa Marr for details)
  • The Department of Biology and Earth Science Student Travel Endowed Fund (See Department of Biology & Earth Science for details. Applications due spring semester)
  • The Department of Biology and Earth Science Summer Stipends (See Department of Biology & Earth Science for details. Applications due spring semester)

National Awards

  • American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Undergraduate Research Fellowship; Summer stipend and Travel Award (Morgan Stark 2015-16)
  • American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) Undergraduate Research Award (Bridget Bickers 2014, Morgan Stark 2015)
  • ASBMB Best Thematic Poster Award (Bridget Bickers 2015)
  • ASM Student and Post-doctoral Travel Award (Morgan Stark 2016)
  • Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS) Travel Grant (Will King 2016)