Office: ELA 271B
Paleoindian Archaeology, Paleolithic Archaeology, Human Dispersals, Lithic Technology, Fluted Projectile Points, Geometric Morphometrics, GIS, Cultural Transmission, Evolutionary Archaeology
Heather Smith received her Ph.D. in Anthropology with an emphasis in Archaeology from Texas A&M University in 2015. Her focal research interests concern human dispersals into and throughout the American continents at the end of the last Ice Age and changes in technological adaptations in response to climate change. To address these issues, she brings together lithic analysis, geoarchaological, and paleoenvironmental studies and uses traditional and digital methods of analyses including geometric morphometrics, cladistics, and GIS. Her resent research includes analyses of Clovis and non-Clovis fluted-point assemblages from across North America to address how fluted-point technology was culturally transmitted from the mid-continent to the Arctic at the end of the last Ice Age.
As a field scientist, she has worked on several academic and compliance related projects, some of which include Debra L. Friedkin (TX), Frost Town (TX), Bonneville Estates Rockshelter (NV), Owl Ridge (AK), Dry Creek (AK), McDonald Creek (AK), Serpentine Hot Springs (AK), Blackwater Draw (NM), the Epipaleolithic Kovrizhka site in eastern Siberia, and surveys of the Nenana, Tanana, and Susitna River valleys (AK), and Chama River valley (NM).
One facet of her current research expands investigations of the cultural transmission and adaptive significance of fluted-point technology to include other late-Paleoindian point forms and gain a diachronic perspective of cultural transmission within mid-continent North America.