Nikole Bonacorsi ’15

Nikole Bonacorsi ’15
Nikole Bonacorsi ’15

Visiting Assistant Professor of Biology

Taylor Science Center 2038

In her research, Nikole Bonacorsi ’15 works to understand the evolution of morphological diversity in plants by using techniques from several disciplines, including paleobotany, phylogenetic biology, and biomechanics. 

Though working with 400+ million year old fossils is fun, Bonacorsi also enjoys working with living humans. She led many professional development workshops focused on inclusive teaching practices during her time as a head teaching consultant for Brown University’s Sheridan Center for Teaching and Learning, and she looks forward to continuing to develop her passion for teaching and inclusive educational development in STEM at Hamilton. 

She graduated from Hamilton with a double major in biology and psychology.

Recent Courses Taught

Plant Diversity
500 Million Years of Land Plants
Seminar in Evolutionary Biology

Research Interests

Heterospory, evolution of plant reproductive structures, macroevolutionary trends, paleoecology, plant architecture, plant biomechanics, plant form and function 

Select Publications

  • Bonacorsi, N.K., Gensel, P.G., Hueber, F., Wellman, C.H., and Leslie, A.B. (2020). A novel reproductive strategy in an Early Devonian plant. Current Biology, 30, R371-R392.
  • Bonacorsi, N.K. and Leslie, A.B. 2019. Sporangiurn position, branching architecture, and the evolution of reproductive morphology in Devonian plants. International Journal of Plant Sciences, 180, 493-503.
  • Bonacorsi, N.K. and Leslie, A.B. 2018. Functional diversity and convergence in the evolution of plant reproductive structures. Annals of Botany, 123, 145-152.
  • Bonacorsi, N.K. & Seago, J.L. 2016. Root development and structure in seedlings of Ginkgo bilobaAmerican Journal of Botany, 103, 355-363.
  • Sage, K., Bonacorsi, N., Izzo, S., & Quirk, A. 2015. Controlling the slides: Does clicking help adults learn? Computers and Education, 81, 179-190. 

Appointed to the Faculty: 2020

Educational Background

Ph.D., Brown University
M.S., Brown University
B.A., Hamilton College


Patterns and Processes in the Evolution of Heterospoty
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