Aaron Wood

Dept: Geological and Atmospheric Sciences
Office:360 Science

PhD, Department of Geological Sciences, University of Michigan, 2009
MS, Department of Geological Sciences, University of Michigan, 2006
BS, Department of Geological Sciences, Indiana University, 2003
BA, Department of Biological Sciences, Indiana University, 2003

Geol 100 - The Earth
Geol 103 - Age of Dinosaurs
Geol 302 - Summer Field Studies
Geol 324 - Energy and the Environment

Teaching Interests
Field education within the geological and atmospheric sciences enhances and reinforces students’ education as well as their marketability as scientists in academic, government, and industry settings. The benefits of field opportunities, such as the ISU Geology Summer Field Studies course and field-intensive research experiences, are numerous:

• Core concepts become tangible and intuitive;
• Problem-solving skills at the project scale improve; and
• Student curiosity and appreciation of our one and only Earth are positively impacted, among many others.

As the director of the ISU’s Carl F. Vondra Geology Field Station, my goal is to enrich the education of students from ISU and elsewhere by teaching and facilitating relevant field courses and research opportunities through the use of our newly renovated field station in Wyoming.

Research Interests
My research interests include documenting climatic/environmental change and the impact on mammalian communities in the geologic past. I approach this work by combining intensive geological and paleontological field work with analytical techniques, such as time-series analysis, stable isotope work, and geometric morphometrics. Specific studies include lineage and community-scale impacts of the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, a 58-million-year-old global warming event, and mammalian paleobiogeography and faunal composition before and after the Mid Miocene Climatic Optimum.

Google Scholar Profile

Recent Publications

MacFadden, BJ, DS Jones, NA Jud, J Moreno, GS Morgan, RW Portell, VJ Perez, SM Moran, AR Wood. 2017. Integrated chronology, flora and faunas, and paleoecology of the Alajuela Formation, late Miocene of Panama. PLoS ONE 12: e0170300.

Bloch, JI, ED Woodruff, AR Wood, AF Rincon, AR Harrington, GS Morgan, DA Foster, C Montes, CA Jaramillo, NA Jud, DS Jones, BJ MacFadden. 2016. First North American fossil monkey and early Miocene tropical biotic interchange. Nature 533: 243-246.

Velez-Juarbe, J, AR Wood, and C Pimiento. Pygmy sperm whales (Odontoceti, Kogiidae) from the early Pliocene of Florida and North Carolina. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology: e1135806.

Velez-Juarbe, J, AR Wood, C De Gracia, AJW Hendy. 2015. Evolutionary patterns among living and fossil kogiid sperm whales: Evidence from the Neogene of Central America. PLoS ONE 10: e0123909.

Wood, AR and NM Ridgwell. 2015. The first Central American chalicothere (Mammalia, Perissodactyla) and the paleobiogeographic implications for small-bodied schizotheriines. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 35: e923893.

MacFadden, MJ, JI Bloch, H Evans, DA Foster, GS Morgan, AF Rincon, and AR Wood. 2014. Temporal calibration and biochronology of the Centenario Fauna, early Miocene of Panama. Journal of Geology 122:113-135.

Clyde, WC, PD Gingerich, SL Wing, U Rohl, T Westerhold, G Bowen, K Johnson, AA Baczynski, A Diefendorf, F McInerney, D Schnurrenberger, A Noren, K Brady, R Acks, C Belcher, G Bowen, M Collinson, A D’Ambrosia, E Denis, K Freeman, G Harrington, P Jardine, M Kraus, B Maibauer, A Noren, J Riedel, S Schouten, K Tsukui, J Weijers, G Welter, F Wittkopp, and AR Wood. 2013. Bighorn Basin Coring Project (BBCP): a continental perspective on early Paleogene hyperthermals. Scientific Drilling 16: 21-31.

Secord, R, JI Bloch, SGB Chester, DM Boyer, AR Wood, SL Wing, MJ Kraus, FA McInerney, and J Krigbaum. 2012. Evolution of the earliest horses driven by climate change in the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. Science 335: 959-962.

Fahlke, JM, PD Gingerich, RC Welsh, and AR Wood. 2011. Cranial asymmetry in Eocene archaeocete whales and the evolution of directional hearing in water. PNAS 108: 14545-14548.

Wood, AR, RM Bebej, CL Manz, DL Begun, and PD Gingerich. 2011. Postcranial functional morphology of Hyracotherium (Equidae, Perissodactyla) and locomotion in the earliest horses. Journal of Mammalian Evolution 18: 1-32. DOI: 10.1007/s10914-010-9145-7