Office: Science Building 334
4240 Campus Dr.
Lima, OH 45804
Ph. D., Biology – 2009. University of Vermont, Burlington, VT.
Dissertation: “Phylogenetic relationships and divergence times in rodents based on both genes and fossils.”
M.S., Biology – 2001. University of Vermont, Burlington, VT
Thesis: “The systematics and biogeography of the mouse-like hamsters, Calomyscus spp.”
B.S., Biology, B. S., Zoology – 1998. University of Idaho, Moscow, ID
Assistant Professor, The Ohio State University, Lima, OH (2014–present)
Assistant Professor (fixed term), Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, Lock Haven, PA (2013–2014)
Adjunct Instructor, Pennsylvania State University, York, PA.(2012–2013)
National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research, Rockville, MD. (2010–2012)
Postdoctoral Researcher, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA. (2008–2009)
Courses Taught at Ohio State
Biology 1101 (Lab) – Intro Biology
Biology 1114 – Form, Function, Diversity, and Ecology
EEOB 4210 – Ecology and Evolution of Vertebrates
EEOB 4220 – Ecology and Evolution of Mammals
EEOB 4520 – Comparative Physiology
EEOB 4998 & 4999 – Undergraduate Thesis Research
I am a mammalogist and a systematist. My research focuses on determining the evolutionary relationships of rodents and other small mammals and involves questions ranging from deep history to recent patterns in populations. I’ve worked on projects involving integrating genetic data with fossil information, using genetics to uncover how past climate influenced evolution, and developing and applying molecular evolution techniques. In addition to work in North America, my fieldwork with small mammals has taken me to West Africa (Guinea and Sierra Leone) and I’ve worked on species from Central Asia.
Current Undergraduate Research Projects
Bhatt, Shivani. 2019-present. “Systematics of mountain voles (Alticola) in northern Pakistan”.
Roderick, Kedar. 2019-present. “Comparing the phylogeographic history of the small mammals of Upper Guinea forests”.
Avila, Hannah. 2018-present. “The coevolution of proteins involved with synthesis and reception of 2-Arachidonoylglycerol in the Euarchontoglires”.
Crites, Rachel. 2017-present. “Are Praomys rostratus from Guinea and Sierra Leone different species?” (presented at the Lima Undergraduate Research Forum).
Weller, Amanda. 2017-present. “Systematics and ecology of the brush-tailed mice, Calomyscus, based on Cytb and Rbp3” (presented at the American Society of Mammalogists meeting in Manhattan, Kansas, the Denman Research Forum, and the Lima Undergraduate Research Forum).
Past Undergraduate Research Projects
Bauer, George. 2018-2019. “Investigating intraspecific relationships among members of the Hybomys Division” (graduated with research distinction; presented at the Denman Research Forum and the Lima Undergraduate Research Forum).
Bishop, Jacqi. 2018. “Filling in gaps in the Myodini evolutionary tree”.
Jurich, Adriana. 2016–2018. “Recovering the Evolutionary History of the Hybomys Division using the IRBP gene” (presented at the Denman Research Forum and the Lima Undergraduate Research Forum).
Balkowiec, Ola. 2017. “Phylogeography of southern brush-tailed mice, the Calomyscus bailwardi species group” (NSF REU program).
Downer, Hannah. 2015–2017. “Determining the evolutionary divergence date for Mus–Rattus” (presented at the Denman Research Forum and the Lima Undergraduate Research Forum).
Army, Bethany. 2015. “Molecular Evolution of the Interphotoreceptor Retinoid Binding Protein (IRBP) in Ground Squirrels and Blind Mole Rats” (graduated with research distinction; presented at the Lima Undergraduate Research Forum).
Schramm, Jorgi. 2015. “Molecular Evolution of the BRCA1 gene in the Muridae”.
Patterson B.D. and R.W. Norris. 2016. Towards a uniform nomenclature for ground squirrels: the status of the Holarctic chipmunks. Mammalia, 80:241–251. DOI: 10.1515/mammalia-2015-0004
Stoltzfus, A. and R. W. Norris. 2016. On the causes of evolutionary transition:transversion bias. Molecular Biology and Evolution, 33:595–602. DOI: 10.1093/molbev/msv274.
Decher, J., A. Hoffmann, J. Schaer, R. W. Norris, B. Kadjo, J. Astrin, A. Monadjem, and R. Hutterer. 2015. Bat diversity in the Simandou Mountain Range of Guinea, with the description of a new white-winged vespertilionid. Acta Chiropterologica, 17:255–282.
Fulton, T. L., R. W. Norris, R. W. Graham, H. A. Semken Jr., and B. Shapiro. 2013. Ancient DNA supports southern survival of Richardson’s collared lemming (Dicrostonyx richardsoni) during the Last Glacial Maximum. Molecular Ecology, 22:2540–2548. DOI: 10.1111/mec.12267
Decher, J., R. W. Norris, and J. Fahr. 2010. Small mammal survey in the upper Seli River valley, Sierra Leone. Mammalia, 74:163–176. DOI: 10.1515/MAMM.2010.026
Norris, R. W., C. A. Woods, and C. W. Kilpatrick. 2008. Morphological and molecular definition of Calomyscus hotsoni (Rodentia: Muroidea: Calomyscidae). Journal of Mammalogy, 89:306–315. DOI: 10.1644/06-MAMM-A-071R1.1
McPartland, J. M., M. Glass, I. Matias, R. W. Norris, and C. W. Kilpatrick. 2007. A shifted repertoire of endocannabinoid genes in the zebrafish (Danio rerio). Molecular Genetics and Genomics, 277:555–570. DOI: 10.1007/s00438-007-0207-3
McPartland, J. M., R. W. Norris, and C. W. Kilpatrick. 2007. Detecting coevolution in the endocannabinoid system using gene trees in species trees. Gene, 397:126–135. DOI: 10.1016/j.gene.2007.04.017
McPartland, J. M., R. W. Norris, and C. W. Kilpatrick. 2007. Tempo and mode in the endocannabinoid system. Journal of Molecular Evolution, 65:267–276. DOI: 10.1007/s00239-007-9004-1
Norris, R. W. and C. W. Kilpatrick. 2007. A high elevation record of the Star-nosed Mole (Condylura cristata) in northeastern Vermont. Canadian Field-Naturalist, 121:206–207.
Norris, R. W., K. Zhou, C. Zhou, G. Yang, C. W. Kilpatrick, and R. L. Honeycutt. 2004. The phylogenetic position of the zokors (Myospalacinae) and comments on the families of muroids (Rodentia). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 31:972–978. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2003.10.020
Selected Other Publications
Norris, R. W., 2017. Family Spalacidae (Muroid mole-rats). Pp. 108-142 in Handbook of the Mammals of the World. Vol. 7, Rodents II (D.E. Wilson, T.E. Lacher, Jr., and R.A. Mittermeier RA eds.). Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.
Decher, J. and R.W. Norris. 2013. Book Review — Mammals of Africa, 6 vols. Bloomsbury Publishing, London (2013). Mammalian Biology, 78: 393–395. DOI: 10.1016/j.mambio.2013.05.001
Norris, R. W. 2006. Chapter 7: A rapid biological assessment of the Déré, Diécké, and Mt. Béro classified forests, Southeastern Guinea. Pp. 82–90 and 181–188 in Wright H., J. McCullough, L. E. Alonso, and M. S. Diallo eds. A Rapid Biological Assessment of Three Classified Forests in Southeastern Guinea. RAP Bulletin of Biological Assessment, vol. 40.
Norris, R. W., S. Morshed, C. W. Kilpatrick, C. A. Woods, P. L. Perelman, S. A. Romanenko, and V. G. Malikov. 2003. The new data on diversity of Calomyscus Thomas, 1905 (Rodentia, Calomyscinae). Pp 166-169 in Proceedings of International Conference devoted to the 90th anniversary of Prof. I. M. Gromov. Saint Petersburg.