Dr. Elizabeth McGee

Dr. Elizabeth McGee

My teaching and research interests can best be summed up as an answer the call to “Get out and Play!” I have been involved in some aspect of informal and/or outdoor education for over 25 years. I am executive director of an outreach program called Youth in Science which provides outdoor learning experiences in the Sierra Nevada to low-income kids from the greater San Jose area. There are many research opportunities in the area of outdoor education, most notably projects that address why and how outdoor education is effective in fostering science literacy and self-confidence. I am also interested in working with teachers to enhance their understanding of biological evolution in order to integrate these ideas and concepts into all K-12 life science education activities and labs. I am broadly interested in ecology and evolution. Since 1999 I have worked in the rainforests of eastern Madagascar to investigate the effects of selective logging on lemur biogeochemistry. I also conduct research on Paleocene and Eocene mammals, specifically on the taphonomy and paleobiology of an archaic mammal calledCoryphodon.

Contact Information

Dr. Elizabeth McGee
Professor, Biological Sciences & Science Education
Graduate Advisor, Science Education Program
Email: emcgee@email.sjsu.edu
Phone: 408-924-5277

Science Ed Courses Taught

Science Education 173: Methods in Science Teaching
Science 210: Integrative Science in the Outdoor Classroom
Science 255: Special Topics - Evolution in the Science Classroom


Ph.D. State University of New York, Stony Brook, Anthropology, 1997. 
M.A. State University of New York, Stony Brook, Anthropology, 1993.
M.A. University of California, Berkeley, Paleontology, 1989. 
A.B. University of California, Berkeley, Anthropology, 1983.

Select Publications

McGee, E.M. and W.F. Turnbull. 2010. A Paleopopulation of Coryphodon lobatus(Mammalia: Pantodonta) from Deardorff Hill Coryphodon Quarry, Piceance Basin, Colorado. Fieldiana Geology 1554:1-12.

Vaughn, S.E. and E.M. McGee. 2009. Association of Allobosca crassipes (Diptera: Hippoboscidae) with the black and white ruffed lemur (Varecia variegata variegata) and Milne-Edwards’ sifaka (Propithecus edwardsi) in southeastern Madagascar.  Pan-Pacific Entomologist 85(3):162-166.

McGee, E.M., S.E. Vaughn, J.S. Lundberg. 2008. Biogeochemical effects of anthropogenic disturbance across time and habitat in Madagascar. International Journal of Primatology 96:447.  

McGee, E.M. & S.E. Vaughn. 2007.  Biogeochemical effects of anthropogenic disturbance on Propithecus edwardsi (Primates: Indriidae) from Ranomafana National Park in southeastern Madagascar. American Journal of Physical AnthropologySupplement 44: 168. 

McGee, E. and S.E. Vaughn. 2006. Stable isotope analysis: a technique for  evaluating ecological change in disturbed habitats. International Journal of Primatology 27 (Supplement 1):499.

Soto, J.G., Anand, S. and McGee, E. 2004. Plagiarism avoidance: an empirical study examining teaching strategies. Journal of College Science Teaching 33:42-48.

McGee, E.M. 2003. What is a Primate? American Biology Teacher 65:313-318.

McGee, E.M. 2002. Intraspecific dental variability in cf. Coryphodon anthracoideus(Mammalia: Pantodonta) from Roehler’s Coryphodon Catastrophe Quarry, Washakie Basin, Wyoming. Rocky Mountain Geology 37:61-73.

McGee, E.M. 2001. A mass death accumulation of Coryphodon anthracoideus(Pantodonta: Mammalia) from Roehler's Coryphodon Catastrophe Quarry (Lower Eocene, Wasatch Formation, Washakie Basin, Wyoming); pp. 317-333 in (G.G. Gunnell, ed.), Eocene Vertebrates: Unusual Occurrences and Rarely Sampled Habitats, Plenum Press, New York.