Tara Rajaniemi

Tara Rajaniemi, PhD

Professor

Biology

Curriculum Vitae

508-999-8223

508-999-8196

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Violette Research 205A

Education

2001University of MichiganPhD
1995Florida State UniversityBA

Teaching

  • Plant Biology
  • Community Ecology
  • Experimental Design and Analysis

Teaching

Programs

Teaching

Courses

Patterns and processes shaping distributions, abundance, and diversity of species. Topics include interactions between pairs of species, structuring of multispecies communities, and responses of species pairs and larger species networks to the physical environment. These questions are explored through conceptual frameworks of communities, mathematical models, foundational publications in the field, and current research. Plant, animal, and microbial communities are considered.

In-depth study of a specific area in biology, leading to independent research addressing a biological question. Research results will be presented in a professional-style poster at a research symposium. Attendance at biology department seminars is also required.

Patterns and processes shaping distributions, abundance, and diversity of species. Topics include interactions between pairs of species, structuring of multispecies communities, and responses of species pairs and larger species networks to the physical environment. These questions are explored through conceptual frameworks of communities, mathematical models, foundational publications in the field, and current research. Plant, animal, and microbial communities are considered.

Research

Research Interests

  • Root growth responses to competition
  • Effects of species interactions on community structure
  • Plant species distributions on coastal dunes

Select publications

  • Rajaniemi, T.K., and Barrett, D.T. (2018).
    Germination responses to abiotic stress shape species distributions on coastal dunes
    Plant Ecology, 219, 1271-1282.
  • Rajaniemi, T.K., Goldberg, D.E., Turkington, R., and Dyer, A.R. (2012).
    Local filters limit species diversity, but species pools determine composition
    Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics, 14, 373-380.
  • Rajaniemi, T.K. (2011).
    Competition for patchy soil resources reduces community evenness
    Oecologia, 165, 169-174.
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