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About Jeremy Davis

My scholarly interests focus on adaptive decision making in animals. I use several species of insects as experimental models, and am particularly interested in egg-laying decisions. My research focuses on three mechanisms that shape insect decisions. First, I explore how individuals use the environment in which they were born to improve estimates of habitat quality during egg-laying decisions. Second, I am interested in how and why animals use other individuals as sources of information about the quality of encountered habitats and the competition they will encounter there. Finally, I am interested in “silver spoon” effects, in which organisms are forced to select habitats they would otherwise avoid because they are unable to find, access or defend better habitats.
My research uses a combination of field observations, laboratory experiments and comparative approaches. Undergraduate researchers are typically an integral part of these research projects.
Currently, my classrooms are shaped by two evidence-based teaching strategies. “Active learning” reflects research in cognitive science indicating that students learn best when required to actively use their knowledge to answer questions and work through problems both in and out of the classroom. This is in contrast to passively receiving content from lectures and reading. “Model-based inquiry” aims to model, in the classroom, what scientists do in their research. In model-based inquiry, students construct models or hypotheses to explain phenomena, and then are provided data to determine for themselves the most likely explanation.


Present Lecturer, University of Washington Tacoma

Curriculum Vitae

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