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Faculty Profile

Scott Boback

Professor of Biology (2007)

Contact Information

Rector North Room 1303


Broadly, I am an animal ecologist with a focus in herpetology (non-avian reptiles and amphibians). I teach courses in ecology, evolution, vertebrate natural history, and physiology. My students and I investigate a variety of organisms in both lab and field settings. Recent projects have included the muscular performance of snakes during constriction, the population ecology of painted turtles, and the evolutionary development of snake jaws.


  • B.A., Ripon College, 1991
  • M.A., University of Northern Colorado, 1995
  • Ph.D., Auburn University, 2005

2021-2022 Academic Year

Spring 2022

BIOL 332 Natural History of Vertebrates
An exploration into the lifestyles of vertebrates heavily focused on field biology. Natural history is strongly dependent on descriptive anatomy and systematics and therefore this course will cover the evolutionary relationships among vertebrates highlighting unique features that facilitated the success of the major groups. In field labs, students will develop observational skills such as how to identify a bird by its song, a frog by its call, a mammal by the color of its pelage, and a snake by its shed skin. Indoor labs will focus on identifying species from preserved specimens as well as providing students with the skills necessary to preserve vertebrates for future study. Preservation methods could include preparing museum-quality mammal and bird skins, formalin fixation of fish, and skeletal preparations. Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisites: one 200-level biology course or ERSC 307. Offered every two years.

BIOL 560 Stu/Faculty Collaborative Rsch