Maggie currently teaches biology, resource management and conservation and sustainability courses at the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs. She is also a member of the Bard College Citizen Science faculty.
Ecological Restoration, Native Plant Revegetation, Citizen Science: I engage citizen scientists and students to develop monitoring programs that measure ecological restoration projects in natural land settings where anthropogenic environmental degradation exists. Citizen scientists and students participate in all of the steps in the collegial process of science including project design, data collection and analysis, and scientific communication.
Citizen science training: I am interested in the relationship between training design and the reliability of data collected by citizen scientists. In applying basic instruction and assessment tools from higher education to the task of training citizen scientists, I hope to uncover what instructional strategies contribute to reliable data collection by citizen scientists.
Science literacy instruction and learning: I am interested in the connection between inquiry-based education, experimental design ability, and science literacy.
2020-2021, Maggie and Colorado Native Plant Society (CoNPS) colleagues are working to develop a CoNPS citizen science program in which CoNPS members collect photo data using iNaturalist to support Budburst phenology research and other local research efforts. See iNaturalist working group meetings for more information: https://conps.org/mfm-event-list/#!event-list
In 2019, Maggie wrote an inquiry-based and experimental design-focused lab curriculum modelled after the lab curriculum used in the classroom. She used the student paid fee to purchase the supplies. In doing so, she saved students $150 and enhanced the learning experience with inquiry-based methods. She recycles the materials at the end of semester which, over time, reduces the per student cost of the lab supplies. For these efforts, and for her student-engaged research activities, Maggie was awarded the 2021 UCCS Campus Sustainability award.
From 2016-2020, Maggie designed and implemented the Rocky Mountain Field Institute Citizen Science Program, an ecological restoration monitoring program situated in the Garden of the Gods Park, USA. Citizen scientists collected data before and after trail restoration, after native plant revegetation efforts and to monitor human compliance with trail closure efforts.
While working with the Greater Arkansas River Nature Association (GARNA) (2009-2013), Maggie co-founded the Youth Ecological Literacy Program (YELP), an academic and experiential science program that serves students in the Salida School District. In 2013, GARNA was recognized by the U.S. Forest Service with the national Partner in Excellence award. Maggie served as GARNA Vice-Chair of the Board, and was named Volunteer of the Year in 2013.
Maggie is a published scientist in the fields of restoration ecology and education.
Maggie earned a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Mount Holyoke College. She received her M.S. in Biology (restoration ecology) from the University of Denver and her PhD in Education (citizen science training) from the University of the Rockies.