Amy Ellwein

Amy Ellwein
Adjunct Professor in Geology
B.S., University of Minnesota; M.S., Ph.D.,University of New Mexico.
Departments: 
Natural & Environmental Sciences Department
Academic Program: 
Education
Geology

Amy, describing a soil profile on the southern Colorado Plateau.

Visiting Professor - Geology and Science Education

Amy, describing a soil profile
on the southern Colorado Plateau.

Education

Ph.D., Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of New Mexico, 2011

M.S., Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of New Mexico, 1997

B.S., Geology and Geophysics, University of Minnesota, 1993

Contact Information

Dept of Natural and Environmental Sciences
Western State Colorado University
Gunnison, Colorado 81231
Office: (970) 943-2465
FAX: (970) 943-7120
Dept: (970) 943-2015

Director of Science Education and Communications
The Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory
Crested Butte, Colorado 81224

amy@rmbl.org
www.rmbl.org
email Amy at Western

Courses

  • Fall: SCI110 - Habitable Planet
  • Spring: SCI210 - Dynamic Planet

Teaching and Research Interests

My geologic research interests are in landscape evolution and surficial processes as informed by soil geomorphic techniques, remote sensing, geographic information systems (GIS), and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating, particularly in semiarid systems.  My doctoral research in semiarid eolian systems of northeastern AZ shows that eolian activity in this region is a result of increased sediment supply during cooler and/or wetter glacial conditions, not increased aridity of interglacials - a common assumption. My field research experiences with the US Geological Survey, geoarchaeological consulting firms, and in my doctoral research have led to my sustained interests in the interactions between climate change and coupled responses of geomorphic and biologic systems.

In the past ten years, my interests in science education have primarily focused on improving data and science literacy (Earth Systems Science literacy) and science inquiry skills of undergraduates and pre- and in-service K-12 educators as well as public audiences. I am a founding board member of SEIS, which has been providing professional development in science for K-12 educators since 2003 with major funding from the New Mexico Public Education Department, Sandia National Labs, and New Mexico EPSCoR (an NSF program).  I develop and teach workshops as well as graduate level field courses for teachers (e.g. GeobotanyWatersheds and RiversUsing Scientific Data for Multi-Disciplinary Science Instruction).  I joined Western in 2010 after leaving a faculty position at the University of New Mexico, where I taught integrated lab-lecture science courses for non-majors and pre-service teachers in the Natural Sciences Program.

Affiliations

In addition to teaching at Western, I am the Director of Science Education and Communications at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory.  I started at RMBL in 2010 as an NSF post-doctoral fellow developing and assessing college-level, inquiry-based curricular materials and a web site, Digital RMBL, featuring long-term ecological data sets and contextual information. I develop and supervise a variety of K-16 science education projects for RMBL, as well as K-gray education, outreach, and science communications.

I am a founding and advisory board member of the Science Education Institute of the Southwest (SEIS) - see above.

Publications

Ellwein, A.L., Mahan, S.A., and McFadden, L.D., in preparation, Impacts of climate change on the formation and stability of late Quaternary sand sheets and falling dunes, southern Colorado Plateau, USA.

Ellwein, A.L., Hartley, L.M., Billick, I., and Donovan, S., in review, Using rich context and data exploration to improve climate and data literacy: bringing a field station into the classroom, Journal of Geoscience Education - Special Volume: Outcomes from Climate Literacy Efforts.

Gellis, A.C., Pavich M.J., Ellwein, A.L., Wieczorek, M.E., and Viger, R.J., 2012, Sources of sediment in the current arroyo cycle using a sediment budget for two subbasins of the Rio Puerco, New Mexico, Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 124, p. 817-841.

Ellwein, A.L., Mahan, S.A., and McFadden, L.D., 2011, New optically stimulated luminescence ages provide evidence of MIS3 and MIS2 eolian activity on Black Mesa, northeastern Arizona, USA, Quaternary Research, v. 75, p. 395-398.

Nyman, M.W., Ellwein, A.L., Geissman, J.W., and McFadden, L.D., 2008, Science teacher training: the role of universities,Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, v. 89, n. 50, p. 514-515.

Wawrzyniec, T.F., McFadden, L.D., Ellwein, A.L., Meyer, G., Scuderi, L.A., McAuliffe, J., and Fawcett, P., 2007, LiDAR spot comparison and analysis: a method for detecting small, seasonal hillslope change using TLS LiDAR data, Black Mesa Escarpment, NE Arizona, Geosphere, v. 3, n. 6, p. 550-567.

Gellis, A.C., Pavich, M.J., Bierman, P.R., Clapp, E.M., Ellwein, A., and Aby, S., 2004, Modern sediment yield compared to geologic rates of sediment generation in a semi-arid basin, New Mexico - determining the human impact, Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, v. 29, p. 1359-1372.

Menking, K.M., Anderson, R.Y., Brunsell, N.A., Allen, B.D., Ellwein, A.L., Loveland, T.A., and Hostetler, S.W., 2000, Evaporation from groundwater discharge playas, Estancia Basin, central New Mexico, Global and Planetary Change, v. 25, p. 133-147.

Ellwein, A.L., 1997, Quaternary evolution of eolian landforms, soils, and landscapes of the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona: New Mexico Geology, v. 19, no.2.

Invited, Peer-Reviewed, and First-Authored Web Resources

I am the primary author of Digital RMBL content including data rich, inquiry-based modules  for college-level audiences: Biology of Climate Change, Pollination Biology, Ecology of Fear, and the Warming Meadow Experiment.

Ellwein, A.L. and Nyman, M.W., 2012, Using Scientific Data for Multi-Disciplinary Science Instruction, SERC Workshop -Teaching the Methods of Geoscience

Ellwein, A.L. and Swanson, B., 2009, Watersheds and Rivers, SERC Workshop - Teaching the Process of Science

Ellwein, A.L., 2009, The Activity Model for Inquiry: Reflective Writing Prompts, SERC Workshop - Teaching the Process of Science

Ellwein, A.L. and Lowrey, T., 2007, Geobotany, SERC Workshop - Preparing Teachers to Teach Earth Science

Ellwein, A.L., 2007, Active learning and lasting impacts: reflective writing in a field-based geobotany course for teachers, SERC Workshop - Preparing Teachers to Teach Earth Science

Abstracts and Presentations

Ellwein, A.L., Mahan, S.A., and McFadden, L.D., 2013, Impacts of climate change on the formation and stability of late Quaternary sand sheets and falling dunes, southern Colorado Plateau, USA, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 45, n. 5, p. 11.

Ellwein, A.L., 2013, Bringing field station data into the college classroom: lessons learned from the Digital RMBL project, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 45, n.5, p. 7.

Ellwein, A.L. and Nyman, M.W, 2012, Putting the horse in front: investigation of teacher data and climate literacy informs climate science professional development, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 44, n. 7, p. 575.

Ellwein, A.L., Nyman, M.W, Connealy, S., Strong, M., and Daniel, M.J., 2011, Investigating and improving the science and data literacy of pre-service elementary educators, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 43, n. 5, p. 405.

Nyman, M.W., Ellwein, A.L., Daniel, M.J., and Connealy, S., 2011, Using data-rich instruction for climate change education: road blocks and pathways, EOS Trans. AGU, Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract ED21C-0598.

Ellwein, A.L., Mahan, S.A., and McFadden, L.D., 2009, New OSL ages provide evidence of MIS3 and MIS2 eolian activity on Black Mesa, northeastern Arizona, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 41, n. 7, p. 258.

Ellwein, A.L. and Nyman, M.W, 2009, Geoscience field courses for in-service teachers: reflecting on place and process, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 41, n. 7, p. 488.

Nyman, M.W. and Ellwein, A.L., 2009, Promoting Earth System Science literacy through pre- and in-service teacher education at the University of New Mexico, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 41, n. 7, p. 713.

Gellis, A.C., Pavich M.J., Ellwein, A.L., Wieczorek, M.E., and Viger, R.J., 2009, Sources of sediment in the current arroyo cycle using a sediment budget for two subbasins of the Rio Puerco, New Mexico, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 41, n. 7, p. 228.

McFadden, L.D., Meyer, G., Persico, L., Birkeland, P., Eppes, M., Harrison, B., McDonald, E., Ellwein, A.L., Frechette, J., and Burke, R.M., 2008, Integrating Different Conceptual Models In Studies of Topography-Soil Relations: The Importance of Chronosequence-Based Studies, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs.

Galewsky, McFadden, L.D., and Ellwein, A.L., 2007, Radiative-convective land surface equilibria: an idealized modeling approach, EOS Trans. AGU, v. 88, n. 52, Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract H33C-1457

Nyman, M.W., Ellwein, A.L., Geissman, J.W., McFadden, L.D., and Crossey, L.J., 2007, The Natural Science Program at the University of New Mexico: Geosciences play a central role in preservice teacher training, EOS Trans. AGU, v. 88, n. 52, Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract ED41B-0483

Ellwein, A.L., McFadden, L.D., and Mahan, S., 2007, Black Mesa revisited: new OSL dates provide evidence of late full-glacial and early Holocene eolian activity on Black Mesa, northeastern AZ, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 39, n. 6, p. 79.

Ellwein, A.L., Nyman, M.W., and Crane, M.W., 2007, SEIS Elementary Science Workshops: providing inquiry-based, content-rich experiences for K-5 teachers, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 39, n. 6, p. 410.

Gellis, A., Pavich, M., and Ellwein, A.L., 2006, Erosion and sediment yields in two subbasins of contrasting land use, Rio Puerco, New Mexico, Proceedings of the Seventh Federal Interagency Sedimentation Conference, March 25 through 29, 2001, Reno, NV, V83-90.

Ellwein, A.L., Nyman, M.W., Watt, P.M., Lowrey, T.K., 2006, Reflective writing in field-based courses for in-service teachers, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 38, n. 7, p. 191.

Nyman, M.W., Ellwein, A.L., Wawrzyniec, T.F., and Vasquez de Vanderwal, O., 2006, Earthquakes from the Ground Out (EGO): Using real data and visualizations to teach K-8 pre-service teachers plate tectonics and earthquakes, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 38, n. 7, p. 365.

Scuderi, L.A. and Ellwein, A.L., 2006, Evapotranspiration estimation from MODIS imagery for the central Rio Grande, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 38, n. 7, p. 563.

Wawrzyniec, T.F., McFadden, L.D., Meyer, G., Scuderi, L.A., and Ellwein, A.L., Evaluating Hoodoo form and process using TLS LiDAR point cloud data, Black Mesa, Northeastern Arizona, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 38, n. 7, p. 281.

Ellwein, A.L., Nyman, M.W., Wawrzyniec, T.F., and Vasquez de Vanderwal, O., 2006, Earthquakes from the Ground Up (EGU): an integrated curriculum that uses 3D visualizations to teach inquiry-based science to pre-service teachers, Geological Society of America Penrose Conference, Unlocking 3D Earth Systems – Harnessing New Digital Technologies to Revolutionize Multi-Scale Geologic Models, University of Durham, England.

Nyman, M.W. and Ellwein, A.L., 2006, Adding to the teacher’s toolbox: Workshop groups and reflective writing as instructional strategies, CASTL Workshop Success in the Classroom: Sharing Practices That Work, The University of New Mexico Center for the Advancement of Scholarship in Teaching and Learning (CASTL).

Ellwein, A.L. and Scuderi, L.A., 2005, Daily evaporative flux estimates using MODIS imagery in a coupled energy balance model, NM EPSCoR Annual Conference, Albuquerque, NM.

Scuderi, L.A., Watson, R.P., Ellwein, A.L., Montano, E., 2005, Algorithm Development for Vegetation Change Detection and Environmental Monitoring, International EOS/NPP Direct Readout Meeting, Benevento, Italy.

Ellwein, A.L. and Nyman, M.W., 2005, Reflective writing as a formative and summative assessment tool in a field-based earth science course, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 37, n. 7, p. 222.

Nyman, M.W., Ellwein, A.L., and Meyer, G., 2005, Teaching to observe: a field and inquiry-based model for teaching science process and geologic context, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 37, n. 7, p. 549.

Pavich, M.J., Gellis, A.C., Clark, I., Ellwein, A.L., and Aby, S., 2005, Sediment budgets the “Old Fashioned” way for two sub-basins on the Rio Puerco, central New Mexico, Fall Meeting Supplement, Eos Trans. AGU, v. 86, n. 52, Abstract H51E-0415.

Nyman, M.W. and Ellwein, A.L., 2005, Science Education for Pre-Service Elementary Teachers at the University of New Mexico, NASA-Lunar Planetary Institute (LPI) Workshop, Before the First Day of School: Pre-Service Teacher Preparation and the Role of the Earth and Space Science Community, NASA-LPI National Meeting, Houston, Texas. Invited Talk.

Nyman, Matthew, Daniel, MaryJo, Ellwein, Amy, and Rogers, John, 2003, Natural Science Program: Earth, space, and environmental science education for K-8 pre-service teachers at the University of New Mexico. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. Ellwein presenting.

Gellis, A.C., Milan Pavich, Paul Bierman, Amy Ellwein and Erik Clapp, 2001, Modern compared to geologic rates of erosion in Arroyo Chavez, Rio Puerco Basin, New Mexico, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs.

Gellis, Allen, Pavich, Milan, Bierman, Paul, Ellwein, Amy, Aby, Scott, and Clapp, Erik, 2000, Comparison of geomorphic and isotopic measurements for erosion in the Rio Puerco, New Mexico, in Cole, J.C., ed., U.S. Geological Survey Middle Rio Grande Basin study--Proceedings of the fourth annual workshop, Albuquerque, New Mexico, February 15-16, 2000: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 00-488, p. 46-47.

Menking, K.M., Ellwein, A.L., Anderson, R.Y., and Allen, B.D., 1997, Comparison of atmospheric and hydrologic estimates of groundwater discharge and evaporation for the Estancia basin playa complex, central NM (Part I): American Geophysical Union, 1997 Fall Meeting, San Francisco, 8-12 December.

Ellwein, A.L., McFadden, L.D., and Forman, S.L., 1997, Quaternary evolution of eolian landforms, soils, and landscapes of the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs.

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