Tara Selly

Tara Selly
Research Assistant Professor; Assistant Director of the X-ray Microanalysis Lab
308 Geological Sciences Building
Education

Ph.D. Geological Sciences, University of Missouri
M.S. Geological Sciences, University of Missouri
B.A. Biology and Geology, Gustavus Adolphus College

Research Focus

Ediacaran taxonomy, taphonomic pathways, decay experimentation, micro-CT

My broad research interests are connected by using modern microscopic techniques to answer ancient questions about the origins of macroscopic life on Earth. Through this work, I explore how late Ediacaran (~550 million-year-old) organisms became incorporated into the fossil record and how their preservation influences paleontologists’ ability to interpret their original biology. On the other end of the temporal spectrum, I use modern organisms to confirm how biological tissues react under ancient ocean conditions to replicate and confirm these ideas.