Austin Leone, Ph.D. student

Major advisor: French

Science communication, program evaluation, authentic assessment, tree-thinking, and evolution education

B.S. 2014, University of Oklahoma

M.S. 2017, Texas State University

Oklahoma State University’s Distinguished Graduate Fellowship winner


Specific Interests

My interests cover a variety of topics within science education. My current research interests include measuring undergraduate students’ science communication self-efficacy and science identity in Course-based Undergraduate Research Experiences (CUREs) and using active learning & science communication tools in introductory biology courses to improve science communication. Other interests include phylogenetic tree & evolution education and how localized religiosity interacts with evolution acceptance abroad, specifically in Southeast Asia.



  • Leone, E. A., Daniel, K. L., French, D. P., & Clough, M. (2021). Statements of Critical Significance for communicating succinctly. In S. Rowland & L. Kuchel (Eds.), Science + SciComm + Work: Effective communication in science programs. A practical guide for students and teachers. Springer.
  • Leone, E. A. (2021). Using equitable teaching practices in a general genetics course. Cimarron Review MLK Celebration Anthology. Spring 2021 issue. 104-106. ISSN: 0009-6849.
  • Leone, E. A. & French, D. (2021). Evaluating science identity, communication self-efficacy, value, and skills gained in a hybrid CURE lab. In B. Heyborne & S. Yang (Co-chairs), Biology Education Research Symposium Proceedings. National Association of Biology Teachers Professional Development Conference, Atlanta, GA.
  • Jenkins, K., Mead, L., Baum, D., Daniel, K. L., Bucklin, C. J., Leone, E. A., Gibson, J. P. & Naegle, E. (2021). BETTSI - Basic Evolutionary Tree-Thinking Skills Instrument. QUBES Educational Resources. doi:10.25334/ZQY1-W289
  • Leone, E. A., Salisbury, S. L., Nolen, Z. L., Idema, J. L., Parsley, K. M., Stefanik, K. L., & Daniel, K. L. (2019). Identifying the breakdowns in how students and faculty interpret course objectives. Bioscene 45: 16-23.
  • Daniel, K. L., Bucklin, C. J., Leone, E. A., & Idema, J. L. (2018). Towards a definition of representational competence. In K. L. Daniel (Ed.), Towards a framework for representational competence in science education (pp. 2-12). Berlin, Germany: Springer.
  • Diesmos, A. C., Watters, J. L., Huron, N. A., Davis, D. R., Alcala, A. C., Crobie, R. I., Afuang, L. E., Gee-Das, G., Sison, R. V., Sanguila, M. B., Penrod, M. L., Labonte, M. J., Davey, C. S., Leone, E. A., Deismos, M. L., Sy, E. Y., Welton, L. J., Brown, R. M. & Siler, C. D. (2015). Amphibians of the Philippines, Part I: Checklist of the species. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences, 62(20), 457-539.