About Me

Elizabeth A. Holdsworth:
A biocultural anthropologist exploring
the social and cultural shaping of human biology

As a Ph.D. candidate in anthropology at the University of Albany, I research biocultural anthropology while teaching a variety of courses in anthropology. I believe anthropology is an indispensable discipline to help all people understand the shaping of human biology and health by sociocultural factors, and I aim to help people gain this knowledge through direct instruction and through my contributions to biocultural anthropological research.

Research

My research focuses on how culture affects human health, particularly health disparities and psychosocial stress. I explore how sociocultural constructions such as inequality become embodied and affect human biology for generations, particularly through alterations in the growth and development of physiological systems. My research interests include:

  • Developmental Origins of Health
  • Psychosocial stress
  • Infant growth and development
  • Transgenerational health disparities
  • Epigenetic mechanisms
  • Gender and immigration

Teaching

My primary objectives in teaching are using active learning to apply anthropological concepts to students’ own lives and gain widely-applicable knowledge in how human biology and culture interact. Some of my teaching accomplishments include:

Created an asynchronous online course

Developed and taught Physical Growth and Development, a discussion-based course that encouraged students to learn and evaluate concepts of growth, including reading and critiquing scientific articles.

Taught students how to identify human skeletal remains

Designed labs for students to apply forensic anthropology methods and recording standards, culminating in students providing a full, professional-level biological profile of skeletal remains.

Collaborated with the Women’s Studies Teaching Collective

Supervised undergraduate instructors of Introduction to Feminisms in leading a discussion-based course that encouraged students to make connections between class concepts and personal lives.

Curriculum Vitae

DEGREES
2018 Ph.D., Anthropology, State University of New York at Albany.
Dissertation: Maternal Immigration Stress and Infant Stress Response. Professor Lawrence Schell, Chair.
2013 M.A., Anthropology, State University of New York at Albany.
M.A. Paper: “Infant Growth and Maternal Involvement.”
2010 B.A., Anthropology, State University of New York College at Geneseo, summa cum laude

PUBLICATIONS
Holdsworth, E.A. & Schell, L.M. In review. Maternal-infant interaction as an influence on infant adiposity. American Journal of Human Biology.
Holdsworth, E.A. & Schell, L.M. Forthcoming 2018. “Growth stunting” in The International Encyclopedia of Biological Anthropology.
Appleton, A.A., Holdsworth, E.A., & Kubzansky, L.D. 2016. A systematic review of the interplay between social determinants and environmental exposures for early-life outcomes. Current Environmental Health Reports:1-15.
Appleton, A.A., Holdsworth, E.A., Ryan, M., & Tracy, M. 2016. Measuring childhood adversity in life course cardiovascular research: A systematic review. Psychosomatic Medicine.
Appleton, A.A., Holdsworth, E.A., & Ingle, M. 2016. Epigenetic alterations to NR3C1 and HSD11B2 and the developmental origins of mental disease risk. In D. Spengler & E. Binder (Eds.), Epigenetics and Neuroendocrinology – Clinical Focus on Psychiatry. Springer International Publishing.

OTHER PUBLICATIONS
Holdsworth E. #Review: Gender and Genetics: Sociology of the Prenatal. Allegra. 2017. Available from: http://allegralaboratory.net/review-gender-and-genetics-sociology-of-the-prenatal/

PRESENTATIONS
2017 Maternal early life adverse experiences and birth outcome.
E.A. Holdsworth and A.A. Appleton. Annual Meetings of the Human Biology Association, New Orleans, LA. April 19-20.

2015 Acculturation and Depression Among Hispanic and Asian Americans.
Annual Meetings of the Human Biology Association, St. Louis, MO. March 25-26.

2014 Infant Fatness and Mother’s Engagement.
E.A. Holdsworth and L.M. Schell. Annual Meetings of the Human Biology Association, Calgary, Canada. April 9-10.

2013 Poverty of Environment, Poverty of Development: Intergenerational Pathways of Poor Health in Disadvantaged US Children.
L.M. Schell, J. Ravenscroft, E. Holdsworth. In the symposium, Can the future escape the past: Biosocial factors in the reproduction of poverty. Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Chicago, IL, November 20-24.

TEACHING EXPERIENCE
Instructor at University at Albany, SUNY
Summer 2016, Physical Growth and Development
Summer 2015, Physical Growth and Development
Summer 2014, Forensic Anthropology
Spring 2013, Women’s Studies: Introduction to Feminisms
(with Women’s Studies Teaching Collective)

Teaching Assistant at University at Albany, SUNY
Spring 2017, Introduction to Human Evolution - Led two lab sections, instructed students in labs and graded lab assignments
Fall 2016, Human Population Biology - graded assignments and assisted students, led lecture on growth and development
2014-2016, Human Anatomy and Physiology I and II - Led two lab sections per course, instructed students on labs and graded lab assignments
Spring 2014, Aztecs, Incas, Mayas - Graded assignments, assisted students
Fall 2013, Human Growth and Development - Graded assignments, assisted students, led lecture on Social Influences on Growth and Development

RESEARCH EXPERIENCE
2015-2017 Albany Infant and Mother Study (AIMS), PI Dr. Allison Appleton - Research Assistant
Recruitment, data collection, study management, data analysis, manuscript preparation
2015-2016 Orkney Demography Study, PI Dr. Julia Jennings - Research Assistant
Reviewed 19th century census data from Orkney islands to link persons for demographic analysis
2013-2014 Center for Elimination of Minority Health Disparities – Research Assistant
Entering and editing dataset, literature reviews, assistance in conceptualizing plans for a research grant

SERVICE TO PROFESSION AND DEPARTMENT
2016-present, Amsterdam Minority Health Task Force, Member
2015-2016, University at Albany Anthropology Graduate Student Organization, President
*Awarded Recognized Graduate Student Organization of the Year by the Graduate Student Association
2014-2015, University at Albany Anthropology Graduate Student Organization, Webmaster
2013-2014, University at Albany Anthropology Graduate Student Organization, Secretary
2013, University at Albany Graduate Student Association Grants Reviewer
2012-2013, University at Albany Campus Recreation, Recreation Coordinator
2012-2013, New York State Museum Osteology Lab, Volunteer

GRANTS AND AWARDS
2016 GSEU Professional Development Award
2015 Karen R. Hitchcock New Frontiers Fund Award through Initiatives for Women
2015 University at Albany Graduate Association Travel Grant
2015 Human Biology Association Student Member Travel Award
2014 University at Albany Graduate Student Association Travel Grant

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT & SKILLS
Future Faculty and Teaching Development Certificate, Institute for Teaching, Learning, and Academic Leadership (In Progress)
French: Reading at excellent level, writing at proficient level, speaking at conversational level
Spanish: Basic comprehension
Statistics programs: R, SPSS, SAS
Geographic Information System programs: ArcGIS, QGIS, GeoDa
Operating Systems: Mac OS X, Windows
Imaging programs: Adobe Photoshop, Gimp

LANGUAGES
French: Reading at excellent level, writing at proficient level, speaking at conversational level

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS
Human Biology Association Student Member
Lamb Alpha Anthropology Honor Society
Pi Delta Phi French Honor Society
Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society