Becca Price

Associate Professor


Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences, UW Bothell


I study how people learn and how people learn to teach. Some of my research is based on how college students learn evolution and science in general. My colleagues and I have developed a series of tools that help instructors identify the conceptually challenging aspects of evolution, and we have also created strategies that help students overcome those challenges. As the executive director of the Science Teaching Experience for Postdocs program, I’ve also begun studying how postdocs learn state-of-the-art and inclusive teaching strategies, as well as other issues relating to postdoc success.


Martinková P, Drabinová A, Liaw Y-L, Sanders EA, McFarland JL, Price RM. 2017. Using DIF analysis to reveal potential equity gaps in conceptual assessments. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 16: rm2. DOI:10.1187/cbe.16-10-0307

McFarland JL, Price RM, Wenderoth MP, Martinková P, Cliff W, Michael J, Modell H, Wright A. 2017. Development and validation of the Homeostasis Concept Inventory. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 16: ar35. DOI:10.1187/cbe.16-10-0305

Price RM and Perez KE. 2016. Beyond the adaptationist legacy: updating our teaching to include a diversity of evolutionary mechanisms. American Biology Teacher. 78: 101-108. DOI: 10.1525/abt.2016.78.2.101

Price RM, Pope DS, Abraham JK, Maruca S, Meir E. 2016. Improving students’ understanding of genetic drift and their ability to correct misconceptions: the positive impact of a computer-based simulation. Evolution: Education & Outreach. 9: 1-14. DOI: 10.1186/s12052-016-0059-6

Price RM, Andrews TM, McElhinny TL, Mead LS, Abraham JK, Thanukos A, Perez KE. 2014. The Genetic Drift Inventory: a tool for measuring what undergraduates have mastered about genetic drift. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 13: 65–75. DOI: 10.1187/cbe.13-08-0159

Abraham JK, Perez KE, Price RM. 2014. The Dominance Concept Inventory: a tool for assessing undergraduate student alternative conceptions about dominance in Mendelian and population genetics. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 13: 349-358.DOI: 10.1187/cbe.13-08-0160

Crowther GJ and Price RM. 2014. In defense of misconceptions. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 13: 3-5. DOI:10.1187/cbe.13-11-0226

Price RM. 2013. Natural selection is a sorting process: what does that mean? American Biology Teacher. 75: 130-132. DOI: 10.1525/abt.2013.75.2.11

Hiatt A, Davis GK, Trujillo C, Terry M, French DP, Price RM, Perez KE. 2013. Getting to evo-devo: concepts and challenges for students learning evolutionary developmental biology. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 12: 494–508. DOI: 10.1087/cbe.12-11-0203

Perez KE, Hiatt A, Davis GK, Trujillo C, French DP, Terry T, Price RM. 2013. The EvoDevoCI: A Concept Inventory for Gauging Students’ Understanding of Evolutionary Developmental Biology. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 12: 665-675. DOI:10.1187/cbe.13-04-0079

Price RM. 2012. How we got here: an inquiry-based activity about human evolution. Science. 338: 1554-1555. DOI: 10.1126/science.1215221.

Price RM. 2012. How we got here: evolutionary changes in skull shape in humans and their ancestors. American Biology Teacher. 74(2): 106-110. DOI: 10.1525/abt.2012.74.2.8.

Price RM. 2012.The influence of emersion on the rate at which Nucella lamellosa consumes prey in the laboratory. American Malacological Bulletin. 30(2): 255-259.

Andrews TM, Price RM., Mead LS, McElhinny TL, Thanukos A, Perez KE, Herreid CF, Terry DR, and Lemons PP. 2012. Biology undergraduates' misconceptions about genetic drift. CBE-Life Sciences Education. 11: 248-259. DOI: 10.1187/cbe.11-12-0107.Also featured in the CBE-Life Sciences Education Highlights of 2012.

Carnell R and Price RM. 2012. Global Climate Change: What does it look like? National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science

Price RM. 2011. Performing evolution: role-play simulations. Evolution: Education & Outreach. 4: 83-94. DOI: 10.1007/s12052-010-0300-7.

Price RM. 2011. Introducing the nature of science through a required research-based course. CUR Q on the Web. 32: 5-6.

Price RM, Valdés A, and Gosliner TM. 2011. Phylogeny of the aperta clade in the genus Philine (Gastropoda: Opisthobranchia). Veliger. 51: 1-58.

Price RM, Rosypal AC, Powell T, and Kern B. 2008. Adapting an annual research symposium to recruit under-represented minorities to post-college education. Journal of College Science Teaching. 38(2): 49-53.

Droege J, Kochhar-Lindgren G, Leadley S, Price RM, Rosenberg BR, and Tippens N. 2008. University of Washington Bothell. In A. M. Griffin & J. Romm (Eds.), Exploring the evidence, Vol. IV: Reporting research on first-year seminars" (pp. 83-87). Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina, National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition.

Price RM. 2003. The columellar muscle of neogastropods: muscle attachment and the function of columellar folds. Biological Bulletin. 205: 351-366. Stable URL:

Jablonski D, Roy K, Valentine JW, Price RM, and Anderson PS. 2003. The impact of the Pull of the Recent on the history of marine diversity. Science. 300: 1133-1135. DOI: 10.1126/science.1083246.

Price RM. 2002. Columellar folds-why are they there? American Conchologist. 30: 8-9.

Price RM. 2001. Review of Ancient Invertebrates and Their Living Relatives by Harold L. Levin. Journal of Geology. 110(1): 122.

Student involvement

I encourage undergraduates who are interested in independent study to contact me. Authentic research experiences are so enlightening! Most students won’t pursue careers in biology, but many components of research offer practical experience important for anyone: you will learn to use and interpret statistics; understand how to organize research with a hypothesis, test, and revision; and you will learn elementary computer programming and database design which will help you compose their own programs and databases. We can work together to identify a project for you to study.