Sandi Connelly Headshot

Sandi Connelly

Principal Lecturer
Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences
College of Science

585-475-5602
Office Location
Office Mailing Address
85 Lomb Memorial Drive, 1266 Gosnell Hall, Rochester, NY 14623

Sandi Connelly

Principal Lecturer
Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences
College of Science

Education

BS, Juniata College; MS, University at Buffalo; Ph.D., Miami University of Ohio

Bio

Dr. Sandra J. Connelly joined RIT in 2007. Every term, Dr. Connelly teaches foundational biology lectures (traditional General Biology and online Explorations in Biology) engaging hundreds of students with diverse interests from all colleges at RIT, freshmen through seniors. Further, Dr. Connelly teaches Evolutionary Biology and Interdisciplinary Biology and Chemistry to upper-level Life Sciences majors annually. Dr. Connelly is active in the promotion and design of online learning for RIT students, engaging students in interdisciplinary research initiatives, networking with local K12 and Community Colleges to enhance STEM learning at all levels, and in streamlining assessment strategies for large enrollment courses. Dr. Connelly stays active in the research community through invited talks, serving as a panel expert for NASA and the NSF, and freelance writing of inclusive course materials for non-science majors. Dr. Connelly states, 'The inquisitive nature of RIT students drives an infinite loop. Faculty want to work harder because the students want to advance their educational endeavors every year, making the faculty want to improve. We have truly unique students with unlimited potential — making the sky the starting point, not the limit, for RIT faculty.' To learn more, visit the Connelly Lab.

585-475-5602

Personal Links
Areas of Expertise

Currently Teaching

BIOG-104
1 Credits
Laboratory work to complement the online Explorations in Animal & Plant Anatomy & Physiology (BIOG102). The virtual experiments are designed to illustrate concepts of animal and plant anatomy and physiology, increase understanding of ecosystem interactive components, and improve ability to make, record and interpret observations. Co-requisite: BIOG102: Explorations in Animal & Plant Anatomy & Physiology.
BIOG-102
3 Credits
This course serves as an introduction to animal and plant anatomy and physiology, in addition to the fundamentals of ecology. Topics will include: animal development; animal body systems; plant development; unique plant systems; Earth’s terrestrial and aquatic environments; population and community ecology; animal behavior; and conservation biology.
BIOL-265
4 Credits
This course investigates the historical framework of evolutionary biology and the meaning/nature of evidence pertinent to biological evolution. Topics will include: earth history, the evolution of proteins and the genetic code, molecular evolution, neutral theory vs. selection, genetic variation, natural selection, migration, mutation, genetic drift, fitness, population dynamics and genetics, speciation, systematics and classification systems, molecular phylogenetics, the evolution of eukaryotic organisms, behavioral evolution, historical biogeography, and human evolution and variation.
BIOG-101
3 Credits
This course serves as an introduction to cellular, molecular, and evolutionary biology. Topics will include: a study of the basic principles of modern cellular biology, including cell structure and function; the chemical basis and functions of life, including enzyme systems and gene expression; and the origin of life and evolutionary patterns of organism development on Earth.
BIOL-101
3 Credits
This course serves as an introduction to cellular, molecular, and evolutionary biology. Topics will include: a study of the basic principles of modern cellular biology, including cell structure and function; the chemical basis and functions of life, including enzyme systems and gene expression; and the origin of life and evolutionary patterns of organism development on Earth.
BIOL-295
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed student project or research involving laboratory work, computer modeling, or theoretical calculations that could be considered of an original nature. The level of study is appropriate for students in their first three years of study.
BIOL-298
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum. The level of study is appropriate for student in their first three years of study.
BIOL-301
1 - 4 Credits
This course allows students to assist in a class or laboratory for which they have previously earned credit. The student will assist the instructor in the operation of the course. Assistance by the student may include fielding questions, helping in workshops, and assisting in review sessions. In the case of labs, students may also be asked to help with supervising safety practices, waste manifestation, and instrumentation.
BIOL-495
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed student project or research involving laboratory or field work, computer modeling, or theoretical calculations that could be considered of an original nature. The level of study is appropriate for students in their final two years of study.
BIOL-498
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum. The level of study is appropriate for student in their final two years of study.
ITDS-189
1 - 3 Credits
This is an introductory course on a topic that is not part of the formal curriculum. This course is structured as an ordinary course and has specific prerequisites, contact hours, and examination procedures.
BIOG-103
1 Credits
Virtual laboratory work to complement the online course Explorations in Cell Biology & Evolution (BIOG101). The experiments are designed to illustrate concepts of basic cellular and molecular biology, microscopy, microevolution, and to develop basic scientific techniques, all in a virtual setting. Co-requisite: BIOG101: Explorations in Cell Biology & Evolution Lecture.
BIOL-102
3 Credits
This course serves as an introduction to animal and plant anatomy and physiology, in addition to the fundamentals of ecology. Topics will include: animal development; animal body systems; plant development; unique plant systems; Earth's terrestrial and aquatic environments; population and community ecology; animal behavior; and conservation biology.
BIOL-798
1 - 4 Credits
This course is a faculty-directed, graduate level tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum.

In the News

  • August 17, 2020

    jars of canned produce.

    Learn-to-can classes offered through RIT/GCV&M partnership

    With more people staying closer to home than ever before thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, home gardening has grown in popularity. And many will want to savor the fruits (and vegetables) of their labor long after summer has gone. So a series of online classes on how to preserve food is being offered through the ongoing partnership between RIT and the Genesee Country Village & Museum.

  • August 3, 2020

    professor looking at laptop.

    RIT faculty gearing up to apply spring learnings to fall classes

    The unexpected transition to remote learning during the spring semester challenged faculty across RIT to experiment, create, and deploy new methods of instruction to ensure student success. As the university gears up for in-person and online classes—or a combination of both—faculty members are applying a wide range of lessons learned from the spring to keep academic momentum moving forward in the fall.

Select Scholarship

Journal Paper
Taylor, Derek J., Sandra J. Connelly, and A.A. Kotov. "The Intercontinental phylogeography of neustonic daphniids." Scientific Reports 10. 1 (2020): 1-12. Web.
Moore, Elizabeth, et al. "Cascading Ecological Impacts of Fullerenes in Freshwater Ecosystems." Environmental Toxicology 38. 8 (2019): 1714-1723. Print.
Connelly, Sandra J., Katilin Meier, and Madeline Becker. "Inquiry and Investigations: Salamander antipredator defenses: A field exercise to engage students in ecosystem dynamics." The American Biology Teacher 79. 7 (2017): 564-570. Print.
Lynn, Matthew, et al. "Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing, and Hearing Students in an Introductory Biology Course: College Readiness, Social Learning Styles, and Success." Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities 29. 1 (2017): 173-201. Print.
Connelly, Sandra J., et al. "Effect of Clonal Selection on Daphnia Tolerance to Experimental Conditions." PLOS ONE. (2016): 1-13. Web.
Connelly, Sandra J, et al. "UV-Stressed Daphnia pulex Increase Fitness through Uptake of Vitamin D3." Plos One. (2015): 0-0. Web.
Connelly, Sandra J. "Transpiration & Chemical Vapors." National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science. (2016): 0-0. Web.
Poland, Daniel M, et al. "Variation in Symbiodinium Communities in Juvenile Briareum Asbestinum (Cnidaria: Octocorallia) Over Temporal and Spatial Scales." Marine Ecology Progress Series 476. (2013): 23-37. Print.
Rose, Kevin C, et al. "The Role of Ultraviolet Radiation and Fish in Regulating the Vertical Distribution of Daphnia." Limnology and Oceanography 57. 6 (2012): 1867-1876. Print.
Invited Keynote/Presentation
Connelly, Sandra J. and Jeffrey L. Mills. "Real World STEM Experience in a Workshop-based Course Design." Science Teachers Association of New York State, Annual Meeting, 2016. Science Teachers Association of New York State. Rochester, NY. 7 Nov. 2016. Conference Presentation.
Connelly, Sandi and Jeff Mills. "Non-tasters vs. Super-tastersThe Chemistry and Biology of Your Favorite Foods!" Faculty Showcase. Rochester Institute of Technology. Rochester, NY. 14 Jan. 2015. Lecture.
Connelly, Sandra J and Jeffrey L Mills. "Non-tasters vs. Super-tasters: The Chemistry and Biology of Your Favorite Foods!" Science Exploration Day. Central Western Section of the Science Teachers Association of NYS. Rochester, NY. 15 May 2015. Lecture.
Connelly, Sandi. "How I Flipped My Class – Or, What I did Last Semester!" Cornell University Flipped Class Workshop. Cornell University. Ithaca, NY. 19 Jun. 2014. Keynote Speech.
Connelly, Sandi. "Course Design on the Quick." New Faculty Orientation. Rochester Institute of Technology. Rochester, United States. 14 Aug. 2014. Lecture.
Connelly, Sandi. "How I Flipped My Class – Or, Why I Did What I Did!" EdTech Showcase. National Technical Institute for the Deaf. Rochester, NY. 12 Nov. 2014. Lecture.
Connelly, Sandi. "Identifying Life on Earth (& Elsewhere?)." Introduction to Astronomy Course. Rochester Institute of Technology. Rochester, NY. 9 Dec. 2014. Guest Lecture.
National/International Competition Award Winner
Connelly, Sandra J. D2L Corporation. Brightspace Accessibility Award. Washington, D.C., 2016.
Connelly, Sandra J. Online Learning Consortium. Effective Practice Award. Dallas, TX, 2015.
Connelly, Sandra J. Online Learning Consortium. 2015 Sloan-C Effective Practice Award. Orlando, FL, 2015.
Published Article
Tucker, AJ., C.E.Williamson, K.C. Rose, J.T. Oris, S.J. Connelly, M.H. Olson, D.L. Mitchell. “Ultraviolet radiation affects invasibility of lake ecosystems by warm-water fish.” Ecology, 91:3 (2010): 882-890. Print. «