I'm a behavioral ecologist primarily interested in sexual selection, alternative reproductive tactics, and speciation. Most of my research and training are in herpetology (the study of amphibians and reptiles), but I'm fascinated by the idea of asking similar questions in a wide variety of systems.
Currently, I'm an assistant professor in the Biology Department at the State University of New York, College at Oneonta. My primary classes are Evolution (every semester) and Animal Behavior (fall semester). I'm currently teaching Herpetology for the first time (as of spring semester 2017). I'm also developing new research projects with undergraduate students. If you're interested in collaborating or in participating in that research, please contact me at elizabeth.bastiaans(at)oneonta.edu.
Current student projects include:
1) Incidence of chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) in historical and extant populations of amphibians in Central New York
2) Population genetics of an introduced lizard (Sceloporus undulatus) from Staten Island, NY
3) Factors influencing reproductive investment and mating behavior of bean beetles (Callosobruchus maculatus)
As of summer 2017, I'll be welcoming my first graduate student, Ms. Alexandra Vlk! Alexandra will compare mating behavior and habitat use in wood turtles (Glyptemys insculpta) from disturbed vs. protected localities.
Until June 2015, I was a Howard Hughes Medical Institute postdoctoral teaching fellow at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. I spent half my time in Dr. Marlene Zuk's lab in the Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior department, studying life history evolution in crickets. The other half of my time was spent developing new courses and studying how to best reform existing ones. The HHMI postdoctoral teaching fellow program seeks to incorporate authentic research into undergraduate education by having working biologists develop new courses and learning modules, using methods supported by educational research.
In March of 2013, I completed my PhD in Dr. Barry Sinervo's lab, in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Please see my research page for more details, or if you'd like a copy of my dissertation or publications!