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About Me

Wrighting April

April Wright

Graduate student: David Hillis' Lab at the University of Texas at Austin

E-mail contact: wright [dot] aprilm [at]

Google chat or Docs: wright [dot] aprilm [at]

Office: Patterson Labs 129

Research Interests

Fossils and Phylogeny

I'm very interested in the best practices for estimating phylogenetic trees from the fossil record. Fossil data present many challenges for researchers investigating phylogenetic and macroevolutionary questions. Missing data, biases in preservation and model adequacy are all topics in which I have an interest. Keep an eye on my blog for tutorials and other hosted materials on this topic.

Relevant paper:

Bayesian Analysis Using a Simple Likelihood Model Outperforms Parsimony for Estimation of Phylogeny from Discrete Morphological Data

Putting Fossils in Time Trees

How can we best make use of fossil data when estimating divergence dates? How can current methods, such as 'tip-dating' methods, be applied to paleontological information? Along with collaborators, I am developing empirical projects to address this question.

Relevant output:

Along with two collaborators, I am hosting a workshop and symposium at the SVP meetings. Join us if you happen to be in Berlin!

Estimation and Use of Phylogenetic Trees

If you can put a tree on it, I'm interested. I'm a part of several projects in the Hillis lab, including understanding the True Bug phylogenetic tree and examining the contribution of topological uncertainty in modeling the evolution of complex traits.

Relevant paper:

Long-branch attraction and the phylogeny of true water bugs (Hemiptera: Nepomorpha) as estimated from mitochondrial genomes

Computational Literacy and Education

I'm probably most vocally interested in the pedagogy of computer science and increasing the participation of underrepresented groups in this field. My courses taught page is frequently updated with course materials, all of which are CC-BY. Feel free to use these materials as you see fit (but attribute me!), or get in touch with me to talk more about them.

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Wrighting April by April Wright is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.