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Department of Botany

College of Arts and Sciences

Mark Lyford

AP, Director Life Sciences Program

Specialization: Science Education

Office: Aven Nelson, 138C
Phone: 307-766-2818


B.A. Saint Olaf College, 1993
M.S. University of Wyoming, 1995
Ph.D. University of Wyoming, 2001


Discovering Biology (LIFE 1002), Current Issues in Biology (LIFE 1003) 

Research Emphasis 

My research area is science education.  Broadly speaking, I am interested in how different pedagogical and assessment practices impact student learning.  I am also very interested in studying different curricular approaches to attaining scientific literacy, and making connections between science and society.

Current Research Projects

Incorporating ‘desirable difficulties' into classroom pedagogy.

Institutional models for Scientific Literacy.

Selected Publications

Nehm, R.H., T.M. Poole, M.E. Lyford, B.E. Ewers, S.G. Hoskins, & P.J.S. Colberg, 2008.  Does the Segregation of Evolution in Biology Textbooks and Introductory Courses Reinforce Students' Faulty Mental Models of Biology and Evolution?  Evolution Education Outreach (DOI 10.10007/s12052-008-0100-5).

Jackson, S.T., J.L. Betancourt, M.E. Lyford, & S.T. Gray.  2004.  A 40,000-year woodrat-midden record of vegetational and biogeographic dynamics in northeastern Utah.  Journal of Biogeography 32: 1085-1106.

Lyford, M.E., S.T. Jackson, S.T. Gray, & R.G. Eddy.  2004.  Validating the use of woodrat (Neotoma) middens for documenting natural invasions. Journal of Biogeography 31: 1-10.

Lyford, M.E., S.T. Jackson, J.L. Betancourt, & S.T. Gray.  2003. Influence of landscape structure and climate variability on a late Holocene plant migration.  Ecological Monographs 73(4): 567-583.

Jackson, S.T., M.E. Lyford, & J.L. Betancourt.  2002.  A 4000-year record of woodland vegetation from Wind River Canyon, central Wyoming. Western North American Naturalist 62(4): 405-413.

Lyford, M.E., J.L. Betancourt, & S.T. Jackson. 2002.  Holocene vegetation and climate history of the northern Bighorn Basin, southern Montana. Quaternary Research 58: 171-181

Jackson, S.T., & M.E. Lyford.  1999.  Pollen dispersal models in Quaternary plant ecology: assumptions, parameters, and prescriptions.  Botanical Review 65(1): 39-75.

image of Mark Lyford

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