DIRECTORY

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Christina Wills, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Biology Biology

816-501-4380

Office: St. Ignatius Science Center 220 A

Courses: Biology of the contemporary scene, general biology II, human anatomy and physiology I & II, introduction to research, and advanced principles in biology

Research Interests: My doctoral research in physiological ecology focused on characterizing lipid storage, protein storage and metabolic rates of aging diapausing (a quiescent state) and nondiapausing fruit flies and measuring starvation resistance of diapausing and nondiapausing fruit flies.

At Rockhurst, I have merged my love of teaching with research and have investigated the use of service learning to teach anatomy and physiology to non-science majors, the use of democracy in a science classroom, and using interdisciplinary creative projects to teach science. I am currently participating in the department assessment of learning outcomes of our core courses and in our introductory biology sequence. The majority of my work in the past 6 years has focused on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SOTL).

Selected SOTL presentations:

  1. Wills, Christina, Walker, Mindy, and Salem Laura. Challenges of Assessment Within and Between Programs. Roundtable presentation at Association of College and University Biology Educators (ACUBE) Conference, Indianapolis, IN, October 2013.  
  2. Felzien, Lisa, Wills, Christina, Evan, Elizabeth, and Scholes. 2012. “Assessment of learning and retention in a first year general biology sequence.” Association of College and University Biology Educators (ACUBE) Conference, Sheboygan, WI, October 2012.
  3. Wills, Christina. 2010. “The Use of Service Learning to Teach Non?Science Majors Anatomy and Physiology.” Association of College and University Biology Educators (ACUBE) Conference, Sylvania OH, October 2010.
  4. Wills, Christina.  2010. “The Use of Service Learning to Teach Non?Science Majors Anatomy and Physiology.” Regional Campus Compact Conference, Tulsa OK, September 2010.

I have also provided advisory support for several undergraduate research projects. I encourage students to develop their own research projects that fit their interests. Several students have presented their work at the annual Missouri Academy of Science conference.

Selected Undergraduate Presentations/Posters:

  1. Lierz, Kasey, Bettlach, Haley, Wills, Christina, and Haskins, Mary. Evaluating Household Products to Determine Their Effectiveness in Deterring Ants. Oral presentation at Missouri Academy of Science, Warrensburg, MO, April 2013.
  2. Schumacher, Amanda, Wills, Christina, and Haskins, Mary. Biology Department, Rockhurst University. The Relationship Between Arthropod Diversity and Multiflora Rose Infected with Rose Rosette Disease. Oral presentation at Missouri Academy of Science, Warrensburg, MO, April 2013.
  3. Fuest, Alyson, Nuckolls, Nicole, Wills, Christina, and Haskins, Mary. The Effect of Salt Blocks on Cursorial Arthrods. Poster presented at Missouri Academy of Science, Warrensburg, MO, April 2013.

Other Interests: Middle Eastern dance