Dr Cara Wall-Scheffler

Dr Cara Wall-Scheffler is an Associate Professor of Biology at Seattle Pacific University. Her research focuses on the relationships between body shape, thermoregulation and locomotion in extinct and extant human populations. After completing her undergraduate studies at Seattle Pacific University (USA), she was admitted into Cambridge (St Edmunds) for her MPhil and was awarded a Gates Cambridge Scholarship for her PhD proposal in 2001.  Her PhD focused on the shifts in seasonal resource use by Mediterranean Neanderthals and humans during Marine Oxygen Isotope Stages 3.  Following this work, her postdoctoral research at UW-Madison (USA) honed in on the relationship between modern human morphology and locomotor energetics in order to get a better sense of the tradeoffs between thermoregulation, reproduction and mobility.   She is currently one of the leading authorities on the evolution of human sexual dimorphism and the comparison between lab and field based data in locomotor studies.  She has published papers in the Journal of Human Evolution, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Journal of Archaeological Science, and the International Journal of Osteoarchaeology.

Recent publications include:

Wall-Scheffler, C.M. (in press). The balance between burden carrying, variable terrain and thermoregulatory pressures in assessing morphological variation.  In K. Carlson & D. Marchi (Eds), The Influence of Environmental Factors on Mobility-Morphology-Behaviour Relationships. Springer Life Sciences.

Wagnild, J. & Wall-Scheffler, C.M. (2013). Energetic consequences of human sociality: Walking speed choices among friendly dyads. PLoS One 8(10): e76576.

Wall-Scheffler, C.M. & Myers, M.J. (2013). Reproductive costs for everyone: How female frontal loads impact mobility. Journal of Human Evolution 64(5): 448-456.

Wall-Scheffler, C.M. (2012). Energetics, locomotion and female reproduction: Implications for human evolution. Annual Review of Anthropology 41: 71-85.

Wall-Scheffler, C.M. (2012). The meaning of within population dimorphism for group mobility: Can men and women walk together? Journal of Anthropology 2012: 340493.