Erin C. Blankenship-Sefczek, PhD
Erin C. Blankenship-Sefczek, PhD

Erin C. Blankenship-Sefczek, PhD

Adjunct Assistant Professor
College of Arts and Sciences

Expertise/Specializations

  • Biological Anthropology
  • Dental Anthropology
  • Bioarchaeology
  • Forensic Anthropology
  • Archaeology
  • Embryonic Dental Development
  • Ancient Maya Studies

Academic Appointments

Department

  • Cultural and Social Studies

Position

  • Adjunct Assistant Professor

Secondary Appointment

  • Exercise Science

Teaching Activity

  • ANT 113-Introduction to Anthropology-Cultural Determinants of Health
  • ANT 400-Forensic Anthropology
  • ANT 499-Senior Capstone
  • ANT/SOC/HAP 418-Healthcare, Society and Culture

Biography

Erin Blankenship-Sefczek received her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Aarts in anthropology with an emphasis in biological anthropology and bioarchaeology from San Diego State University. She received her Ph.D. in anthropology with an emphasis in dental anthropology and bioarchaeology from Ohio State University. 

Publications and Presentations

General

  • Assessing the effects of dental developmental stress and the shift to agriculture on tooth crown size, cusp spacing, and accessory cusp expression in modern humans through the Patterning Cascade Model of morphogenesis., 2019
  • First steps-Dentition, kinship, social group, and stats in the Upper Belize River Valley: Small sample insights into Classic Maya social organization in Central Western Belize, Ancient Mesoamerica, 2019
  • Expressions of two near absent dental traits, lingual cuspule and paraconid, on one Archaic period modern human from the Ohio Valley, Dental Anthropology, 2019
  • Maxillary lateral incisor variation and rare trait expression: A case study from Pre-historic Paa-ko, New Mexico, Dental Anthropology, 2013

Presentations

  • “Dental reduction, physiological stress, and changing lifeways: Alterations to dental characteristics associated with the transition to agriculture in Prehistoric Ohio”
     -American Association of Physical Anthropologists Annual Meeting, Cleveland, OH, April, 2020
  • “Lingual cuspule and paraconid on one Archaic period individual from the Ohio Valley”
     -American Association of Physical Anthropologists Annual Meeting, Cleveland, OH, March, 2019
  • “Dentition, kinship, and status in the Mopan-Macal Triangle: Small-sample insights into Classic Maya social organization in Central Western Belize”
    -Society for American Archaeology Annual Meeting, Washington DC, Invited Symposium, April, 2018
  • “Tooth size, cusp expression, and nutritional stress”
    -American Association of Physical Anthropologists Annual Meeting, New Orleans, Poster Presentation, April , 2017
  • “Archaeology and the Maya” 
     -Columbus’ Center of Science and Industry; Synapse Program, April , 2016

Research and Scholarship

Research and Scholarship Interests

  • Dental development, physiological stress markers, tooth morphology, ancient health and social systems, disease and trauma.
     

Current Research Projects

  • I have two ongoing research projects.
    • The first is an exploration of the complexities of the ancient Maya social system and it's impact on biological health. This project continues through the Biological Anthropology Lab located in CR 426C. For more information and to discuss oportunities for research, contact me at ErinBlankenship-Sefczek@creighton.edu
    • I am also working to understanding the effects of childhood physiological stress and diet on tooth size and shape.