SEPAL Post-Doctoral Fellows

Sarah Pickett

Post-Doctoral Fellow

University of Washington

Seattle, Washington


About Me

I come from a small town in Vermont but left for big city life, attending NYU in New York City for my undergraduate degree in biology and the University of Washington in Seattle for my PhD in Neuroscience. While studying at UW, I researched sensory cells of the zebrafish lateral line system – called hair cells – that allow fish to sense water flow. My interest in biology education developed while engaging in science outreach and taking coursework focused on evidence-based teaching. Through these new experiences, my passion for science evolved beyond the lab into a desire to make science accessible to everyone. I strive to be a compelling ambassador of my discipline and to support fellow members of the scientific community to do the same. In my free time, I enjoy choral singing, exploring the natural and urban sights of the Bay Area, and catching up with family and friends.


Research Interest: 

I am ecstatic to continue working with the SEPAL team after briefly joining the group as a UW Graduate Discovery Fellow. I am interested in exploring tools to promote reflective teaching practice and the influence of instructor language on student learning experiences. I will also continue investigating intuitive thinking within the context of formal biology education, asking whether instructional language influences intuitive thinking and student misconceptions about antibiotic resistance.


Advice for others: 

Knowing what she knows now she would tell her younger self and others that do a bit of exploring. Sarah always liked science, especially Biology. She always planned her course selection, and extracurricular activities to be mostly science focused. She writes “Biology is fascinating, but there are plenty of other interesting and important topics to learn and think about. Plus, you never know when you’ll find something new that inspires you” She encourages others to seek out other courses. Also, she like many around the globe faced the option of giving up, and switching career paths. Yet, she relied heavily on her community for encouragement in times of frustration or stress.