Hosted Science Conferences

Discrete Mathematics Day
(September 19-21, 2014)

Vermont Geologic Survey and Lake Champlain Research Consortium, Joint Meeting
(April 26, 2014)

Northeast Consortium on Medical Education, Annual Conference
(September 20, 2013)

Middlebury Fellowships in Environmental Journalism
(September 1-5, 2013)

Vermont Genetics Network, Workshop
(April 27, 2013)

GlobeMed Hilltop Global Health Conference
(October 26-27, 2012)

Keck Northeast Astronomy Consortium, Fall Student Research Symposium
(September 21-22, 2012)

Discrete Mathematics Day
(September 14-16, 2012)

Middlebury Fellowships in Environmental Journalism
(September 11-16, 2012)

Champlain Valley Clay Workshop
(June 1, 2012)

Vermont Environmental Consortium, Annual Meeting
(March 26, 2012)

TEDx Manhattan, Changing the Way We Eat
(January 21, 2012)

TEDx Middlebury
(November 5, 2011)

New England Intercollegiate Geological Conference
(September 17, 2011)

Vermont Genetics Network, Workshop
(January 22, 2011)

TEDx Middlebury
(October 2, 2010)

Middlebury Fellowships in Environmental Journalism
(September 12-17, 2010)

2014 Publications by Science Faculty

Bernhardt, H. S., & Sandwick, R. K. (2014). Purine Biosynthetic Intermediate-Containing Ribose-Phosphate Polymers as Evolutionary Precursors to RNA. Journal of Molecular Evolution, 79(3-4), 91–104. doi:10.1007/s00239-014-9640-1

Bockheim, J. G., & Munroe, J. S. (2014). Organic carbon pools and genesis of alpine soils with permafrost: A review. Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research, 46(4), 987–1006. doi:10.1657/1938-4246-46.4.987

Chakrabarti, A., Xiong, Y., Sun, B., Darrell, T., Scharstein, D., Zickler, T., & Saenko, K. (2014). Modeling radiometric uncertainty for vision with tone-mapped color images. IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, 36(11), 2185–2198. doi:10.1109/TPAMI.2014.2318713

Christman, A., & Forcier, W. (2014). Maximizing revenues for on-line dial-a-ride (Vol. 8881).

Chung, H., Andrews, C., & North, C. (2014). A survey of software frameworks for cluster-based large high-resolution displays. IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, 20(8), 1158–1177. doi:10.1109/TVCG.2013.272

Daumann, L. J., Larrabee, J. A., Ollis, D., Schenk, G., & Gahan, L. R. (2014). Immobilization of the enzyme GpdQ on magnetite nanoparticles for organophosphate pesticide bioremediation. Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, 131, 1–7. doi:10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2013.10.007

Downey, J. S., Mashburn-Warren, L., Ayala, E. A., Senadheera, D. B., Hendrickson, W. K., McCall, L. W., … Goodman, S. D. (2014). In vitro manganese-dependent cross-talk between streptococcus mutans vick and GCRR: Implications for overlapping stress response pathways. PLoS ONE, 9(12). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0115975

Endert, A., Hossain, M. S., Ramakrishnan, N., North, C., Fiaux, P., & Andrews, C. (2014). The human is the loop: new directions for visual analytics. Journal of Intelligent Information Systems, 43(3), 411–435. doi:10.1007/s10844-014-0304-9

Graham, M. J., Djorgovski, S. G., Drake, A. J., Mahabal, A. A., Chang, M., Stern, D., … Glikman, E. (2014). A novel variability-based method for quasar selection: Evidence for a rest-frame ~54 d characteristic time-scale. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 439(1), 703–718. doi:10.1093/mnras/stt2499

Graham, N. (2014). Casimir energies of periodic dielectric gratings. Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics, 90(3). doi:10.1103/PhysRevA.90.032507

Graham, N., Quandt, M., & Weigel, H. (2014). Casimir energy of frequency dependent interactions. Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology, 90(8). doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.90.085004

Grogan, J., Landis, R. M., Free, C. M., Schulze, M. D., Lentini, M., & Ashton, M. S. (2014). Big-leaf mahogany Swietenia macrophylla population dynamics and implications for sustainable management. Journal of Applied Ecology, 51(3), 664–674. doi:10.1111/1365-2664.12210

Horn, C., Manduca, C., & Kauchak, D. (2014). Learning a lexical simplifier using Wikipedia (Vol. 2, pp. 458–463). Presented at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics, ACL 2014 - Proceedings of the Conference.

Jackson, D., Allen, D., Perfecto, I., & Vandermeer, J. (2014). Self-organization of background habitat determines the nature of population spatial structure. Oikos, 123(6), 751–761. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0706.2013.00827.x

Johnson, J. E., West, D. P., Jr., Condit, C. B., & Mahan, K. H. (2014). Strain localization in the Spanish Creek mylonite, Northern Madison Range, southwest Montana, U.S.A. Rocky Mountain Geology, 49(2), 91–114.

Kazmier, K., Sharma, S., Islam, S. M., Roux, B., Mchaourab, H. S., & Wright, E. M. (2014). Conformational cycle and ion-coupling mechanism of the Na+/hydantoin transporter Mhp1. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 111(41), 14752–14757. doi:10.1073/pnas.1410431111/-/DCSupplemental

Kazmier, K., Sharma, S., Quick, M., Islam, S. M., Roux, B., Weinstein, H., … McHaourab, H. S. (2014). Conformational dynamics of ligand-dependent alternating access in LeuT. Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, 21(5), 472–479. doi:10.1038/nsmb.2816

Kim, J., Ryan, P., Klepeis, K., Gleeson, T., North, K., Bean, J., … Filoon, J. (2014). Tectonic evolution of a Paleozoic thrust fault influences the hydrogeology of a fractured rock aquifer, northeastern Appalachian foreland. Geofluids, 14(3), 266–290. doi:10.1111/gfl.12076

Macdonald, F. A., Ryan-Davis, J., Coish, R. A., Crowley, J. L., & Karabinos, P. (2014). A newly identified Gondwanan terrane in the northern Appalachian Mountains: Implications for the Taconic orogeny and closure of the Iapetus Ocean. Geology, 42(6), 539–542. doi:10.1130/G35659.1

Majerczyk, C., Brittnacher, M., Jacobs, M., Armour, C. D., Bunt, R., Radey, M., … Peter Greenberg, E. (2014). Global analysis of the Burkholderia thailandensis quorum sensing-controlled regulon. Journal of Bacteriology, 196(7), 1412–1424. doi:10.1128/JB.01405-13

Majerczyk, C. D., Brittnacher, M. J., Jacobs, M. A., Armour, C. D., Radey, M. C., Bunt, R., … Greenberg, E. P. (2014). Cross-species comparison of the Burkholderia pseudomallei, Burkholderia thailandensis, and Burkholderia mallei quorum-sensing regulons. Journal of Bacteriology, 196(22), 3862–3871. doi:10.1128/JB.01974-14

Mango, H., & Ryan, P. (2015). Source of arsenic-bearing pyrite in southwestern Vermont, USA: Sulfur isotope evidence. Science of the Total Environment, 505, 1331–1339. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.03.072

McHone, J. G., Hussey II, A. M., West Jr., D. P., & Bailey, D. G. (2014). The Christmas Cove Dyke of coastal Maine, USA, and regional sources for Early Mesozoic flood basalts in northeastern North America. Atlantic Geology, 50, 66–90. doi:10.4138/atlgeol.2014.004

Merchant, A. T., & Spatafora, G. A. (2014). A role for the DtxR family of metalloregulators in gram-positive pathogenesis. Molecular Oral Microbiology, 29(1), 1–10. doi:10.1111/omi.12039

Munroe, J. S., Attwood, E. C., O’Keefe, S. S., & Quackenbush, P. J. M. (2015). Eolian deposition in the alpine zone of the Uinta Mountains, Utah, USA. Catena, 124, 119–129. doi:10.1016/j.catena.2014.09.008

Newman, D. J., & Giddings, L.-A. (2014). Natural products as leads to antitumor drugs. Phytochemistry Reviews, 13(1), 123–137. doi:10.1007/s11101-013-9292-6

Prozument, K., Barratt Park, G., Shaver, R. G., Vasiliou, A. K., Oldham, J. M., David, D. E., … Field, R. W. (2014). Chirped-pulse millimeter-wave spectroscopy for dynamics and kinetics studies of pyrolysis reactions. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 16(30), 15739–15751. doi:10.1039/c3cp55352c

Qiao, H., Prasada Rao, H. B. D., Yang, Y., Fong, J. H., Cloutier, J. M., Deacon, D. C., … Ward, J. (2014). Antagonistic roles of ubiquitin ligase HEI10 and SUMO ligase RNF212 regulate meiotic recombination. Nature Genetics, 46(2), 194–199. doi:10.1038/ng.2858

Ryan, P. (2014). Environmental and low temperature geochemistry. Chichester, West Sussex ; Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons Inc.

Ryan, P. C., West, D. P., Hattori, K., Studwell, S., Allen, D. N., & Kim, J. (2015). The influence of metamorphic grade on arsenic in metasedimentary bedrock aquifers: A case study from Western New England, USA. Science of the Total Environment, 505, 1320–1330. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.05.021

Shulman, L. M., & Spritzer, M. D. (2014). Changes in the sexual behavior and testosterone levels of male rats in response to daily interactions with estrus females. Physiology and Behavior, 133, 8–13. doi:10.1016/j.physbeh.2014.05.001

West Jr., D. P., Abbott Jr., R. N., Bandy, B. R., & Kunk, M. J. (2014). Protolith provenance and thermotectonic history of metamorphic rocks in eastern Jamaica: Evolution of a transform plate boundary. Bulletin of the Geological Society of America, 126(3-4), 600–614. doi:10.1130/B30704.1

Who am I? How should we live?
What can we know? What can I hope for?

Raphael, "School of Athens," 1509-10, Vatican, Rome

Raphael, "School of Athens," 1509-10, Vatican, Rome


Many of these most basic questions are developed in depth by different branches of philosophy. For instance, ethics asks: what is good and bad, right and wrong? What is justice? Epistemology asks: what is knowledge as opposed to mere opinion or belief? How do we justify knowledge claims? Aesthetics asks: what is art and what is beauty? Logic asks: what are the rules of critical thinking and sound argument?

Philosophy encourages us to uncover presuppositions, to scrutinize arguments, and to reflect clearly and creatively about the most fundamental questions informing our legal, political, scientific, artistic, and moral pursuits. The Philosophy Department at Middlebury explores these pursuits through a diverse offering of courses, on topics both historical and contemporary. Students well-versed in philosophy gain outstanding preparation for graduate study and law school, as well as for medicine, business, and many other professions.


Sciences Technical Support Services (STSS)

Behind nearly every facet of the sciences at Middlebury, the imprint of the STSS department can be found...

From the fabrication and repair of scientific equipment to supporting the college’s research vessel; from support and training for instrument systems to the development of analytical protocols; from animal husbandry to the preparation and setup of laboratories; from cultivation of exotic plant species in the greenhouse to overseeing environmental safety and regulatory compliance, STSS staff are at work in support of the college’s science teaching and research programs. STSS is also responsible for management of the college’s science center building, McCardell Bicentennial Hall, and for providing numerous direct support services to building occupants.

Lessons from an octopus: student studies invertebrate learning [video]

As senior Alexa Warburton opens the door to the cephalopod lab, a pungent smell escapes into the third-floor hallway of Middlebury College’s McCardell Bicentennial Hall. “It smells like the ocean,” she comments. And it should. Warburton, a senior biology major from Hopkinton, N.H., is spending her summer studying a member of the cephalopod family, Octopus bimaculoides . Her goal is to study the way these saltwater creatures learn, thereby furthering the already-extensive body of research on invertebrate intelligence.

College professor named recipient of Perkins Award

Middlebury College has named Associate Professor of Geology David P. West as the recipient of the 2009 Perkins Award for Excellence in Teaching.

West, a field geologist whose students have commended him for being “a master at explaining concepts” and “incredibly organized and effective,” will be honored at a reception open to the college community on Tuesday, March 17, at 4:30 p.m. in Room 104 of McCardell Bicentennial Hall.