The Williams Lab studies the functional morphology, biomechanics and physiology of feeding in vertebrates to understand the factors driving evolutionary changes in the skull.

Research projects use experimental approaches (both in the lab and in the field), biomechanical modeling and comparative anatomy of non-model and model organisms to characterize the functional basis of morphological differences between species. Some of our current projects are focused on sensorimotor integration in the oral apparatus and the relationship between morphology and kinematic flexibility during feeding.

See the Research

Lab News

  • Rachel Olson receives an Ohio University Student Enhancement Award for her dissertation research on tongue biomechanics.

    See the art and check out the blog by the College of Fine Arts undergraduates taking an anatomical illustration course with Lab PI Susan Williams, graduate student Rachel Olson and artist Lori Esposito.

    New article published Feb., 2018 with former PhD student Jillian Davis in Journal of Experimental Zoology Part A on chewing motor patterns in carnivorous ferrets and frugivorous kinkajous.... it made the cover!

    New article published Jan., 2018 in Journal of Experimental Biology on kinematic flexibility during feeding in pigs.

    New article published Oct., 2017 in Zoology with former Honors Tutorial College undergraduate Kristin Stover on the biomechanics and ontogeny of symphyseal fusion in alpacas.

    New article published Oct., 2017in American Journal of Primatology on thyroid hormone fluctuations in mantled howling monkeys and macaques.


News Archive

Interested in joining my lab?

I am currently accepting PhD students. If you are interested in joining my lab as a graduate student, please contact me by email before you apply so we can discuss your interests and your application to the graduate program in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology in the Department of Biological Sciences.

If you are an undergraduate student looking for research experience, please send me an email.