Rodney Scott, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Genetics
On Faculty since 1989

Phone: (630)752-5304
Fax: (630)752-7278


Ph.D. University of Tennessee Botany 1986-89. Knoxville, Tennessee

M.S. University of Tennessee Botany 1983-86 Knoxville, Tennessee

B.S. University of West Florida Biology 1981-83 Pensacola, Florida

About Rodney Scott

In addition to my research (see below), my professional interests include learning about other model systems, and developing laboratory activities for various purposes. I have led several workshops at the meetings of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education, published a laboratory manual for General Genetics, and developed a kit for Carolina Biological Supply Company that uses microsatellite markers to study Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium in Drosophila.

My personal interests begin with my family, my lovely wife Donna, and my two great kids, Phillip and Janeen. We enjoy doing all kinds of things together, ranging from simple things, like going to a park (maybe for a round of Frisbee golf), to big things like vacations. I also enjoy my involvement in a local church, where I serve on various committees, and participate in other ways, including accountability and mentoring relationships with other men. Some of my favorite leisure activities include hiking in the woods, reading, jogging, cross country skiing, eating (hence the jogging the skiing), and dabbling in small art projects.

Courses Taught

  • BIOL 241 College Biology I
  • BIOL 242 College Biology II
  • BIOL 201 Principles of Biology 
  • BIOL 252 Introduction to Biological Research - Model Research Systems
  • BIOL 356 Genetics
  • BIOL 494 The Integrated Biologist

Membership in Professional Societies

  • American Fern Society
  • American Scientific Affiliation


For many years after completing my doctoral work in Botany, I continued studies that I had initiated in graduate school focused on the genetics and development of the fern Ceratopteris richardii These studies involved characterization of natural developmental phenomena, analyses of various developmental mutants, and most recently, DNA sequence characterization of several alpha-tubulin genes from this species. 

Though I continue to use Ceratopteris in some of my classes, I have recently shifted my primary research activity to studies related to the conservation genetics of several local animal species. These studies all involve the characterization of a type of genetic marker called a microsatellite marker. 

In one study, I am collaborating with an ecologist from the DuPage County Forest Preserve District to study mating patterns in an endangered species of turtle called the Blanding’s turtle. We hope that our study will both provide greater insight into the basic biology of this organism, and will also strengthen ongoing attempts to restore populations of this turtle in DuPage County. 

I am also initiating several other studies that will employ microsatellite markers to study local amphibian populations. These studies will focus on several aspects the population dynamics of these species in vernal pools. Since populations of amphibians are declining world-wide, it is hoped that these studies may provide insights that will contribute to efforts to preserve these organisms. 

Papers Published and/or Presented

Scott, R.J. 2009. Relating Body and Soul: A Collision between Theology, Science, and Good Intentions. Annual Meeting of American Scientific Affiliation, Summer, 2009

Scott, R.J. 2008. Contemporary Genetics Lab Manual. Bent Tree Press. Reno NV.

Scott, R.J., G.J. Gastony, J.W. Weatherford, and T. Nakazato. 2007. Characterization of four members of the alpha-tubulin gene family in Ceratopteris richardii. American Fern Journal. 97(2):47-65.

Scott. R.J., 2000. Using A Molecular Marker to Study Genetic Equilibrium in Drosophila Melanogaster. Tested Studies for Laboratory Teaching: Proc. Of the 22nd Workshop/Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education. 22:19-42

Scott, R.J., 1994. Pollen tube formation and the central dogma of biology. Tested Studies for Laboratory Teaching: Proc. of the 16th Workshop/Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education. 16:121-134.

Cooke, T.J., L.G. Hickok, W.J. Vanderwoude, J.A. Banks and R.J. Scott, 1993. Photobiological characterization of a spore germination mutant dkg1 with reversed photo-regulation in the fern Ceratopteris richardii. Photochem. and Photobiol. 57(6):1032-1041.

Scott, R.J., and L.G. Hickok, 1991. Inheritance and characterization of a dark-germinating, light-inhibited mutant in the fern Ceratopteris richardii. Can. J. Bot. 69:2616-2619.

Warne, T.R., L.G. Hickok, and R.J. Scott, 1988. Chararterization and genetic analysis of antheridiogen-insensitive mutants in the fern Ceratopteris. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 96:371-379.

Scott, R.J., and L.G. Hickok, 1987. Genetic analysis of antheridiogen sensitivity in Ceratopteris richardii. Amer. J. Bot. 74(12):1872-1877.

Media Center