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Climate Change Institute

Kristin Sobolik

Adjunct Professor, Climate Change Institute; Dean, College of LIberal Arts, Wright State University

Kristin Sobolik

Contact Information



Wright State University
College of LIberal Arts 
Dayton, OH  45435-0001

Research interests

My main research interests involve reconstructing prehistoric diet, health, and nutrition using biological remains from archaeological sites. I analyze paleofeces, faunal remains, human skeletal material, and botanical remains from global contexts, although most of the materials I work with are found in dry, arid regions such as the southwestern United States. I also work with material from Maine.

I analyze prehistoric populations of the southern North American deserts, as well as adaptations to desertic environments. My research involves reconstructing environmental and ecological surroundings that may have influenced prehistoric population movement and structure. I focus on questions related to chronology, population patterns through time and across space, prehistoric use of diverse ecotones and microhabitats, and the effects environmental shifts had on human populations using diverse resources.


  • Tito, Raul Y., Samuel L. Belknap III, Kristin D. Sobolik, Robert C. Ingraham, Lauren M. Cleeland, and Cecil M. Lewis, Jr. 2011. DNA from early Holocene American dog. American Journal of Physical Anthroplogy. 145(4):653-657.
  • Sutton, Mark Q., Kristin D. Sobolik, and Jill Gardner. 2010. Paleonutrtion. University of Arizona Press, Tucson, AZ, 369 p.
  • Leach, Jeff and Kristin D. Sobolik 2009. High dietary intake of prebiotic inulin-type fructans from prehistoric Chihuahuan Desert. British Journal of Nutrition 103:1558-1561.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 2008. DNA, Nutrition, and Mobility Patterns in the Northern Chihuahuan Desert. In Case Studies in Environmental Archaeology, 2nd ed., E.J. Reitz (ed.), pp. 211-234, Springer, New York.
  • Spiess, Arthur, Kristin D. Sobolik, Diana Crader, John Mosher, and Deborah Wilson 2006. Cod, Clams and Deer: the food remains from Indiantown Island. Archaeology of Eastern North America 34:141-187.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 2003. Archaeobiology. Altamira Press.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 2002. Children's Health in the Prehistoric Southwest. In Children in the Prehistoric Puebloan Southwest, K.A. Kamp (ed.), Chpt. 7, The University of Utah Press.
  • Graver, Sally, Kristin D. Sobolik, and John Whittaker 2002. Cannibalism or Violent Death Alone? Human Remains at a Small Anasazi Site. In Advances in Forensic Taphonomy: Method, Theory, and Achaeological Perspectives, W.D. Haglund and M.H. Sorg (eds.), pp. 309-320. CRC Press.
  • Poinar, Hendrik N., Melanie Kuch, Kristin D.Sobolik, Ian Barnes, Artur B. Stankiewicz, Tomasz Kuder, W. Geofferey Spaulding, Vaughn M. Bryant, Alan Cooper, and Svante Pääbo 2001. A molecular analysis of dietary diversity for three archaic Native Americans. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 98(8), 4317-4322.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. and Richard Will 2000. Calcined turtle bones from the Little Ossippee North Site in Southwestern Maine. Eastern North American Archaeology 28:15-28.
  • Mead, Jim I., Arthur E. Spiess, and Kristin D. Sobolik 2000. Skeleton of Extinct North American Sea Mink (Mustela macrodon). Quaternary Research 53:247-262
  • Spiess, Arthur E. and Kristin D. Sobolik 1997. Blanding's Turtle Specimens from the Turner Farm Archaeological Site, North Haven, Maine. Herpetological Review 28 (1):24-25.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 1996. Lithic Organic Residue Analysis: An Example from the Southwestern Archaic. Journal of Field Archaeology 23:461-469.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D., Kristen J. Gremillion, Patricia Whitten, Patty Jo Watson 1996. Sex Determination of Prehistoric Human Paleofeces. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 101(2):283-290.
  • Gremillion, Kristen J. and Kristin D. Sobolik 1996. Dietary Variability Among Prehistoric Forager-Farmers of Eastern North America. Current Anthropology 37(3):529-539.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. and D. Gentry Steele 1996. An Atlas of Turtles to Facilitate Archaeological Identifications. The Mammoth Site, Inc., Hot Springs, South Dakota.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 1996. Direct Evidence for Prehistoric Sex Differences. Cutting Edge Column, American Anthropological Association Newsletter, 37(9):7-8.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. (ed.) 1994. Paleonutrition: The Diet and Health of Prehistoric Americans. Center for Archaeological Investigations Occasional Paper Series 22, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 1994. Microscopic Epidermal Identification of Some Common Desertic Plants. North American Archaeologist 15(4):359-372.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 1993. Direct Evidence for the Importance of Small Animals to Prehistoric Diets: A Review of Coprolite Studies. North American Archaeologist 14(3):227-244.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. and Deborah J. Gerick 1992. Prehistoric Medicinal Plant Usage: A Case Study from Coprolites. Journal of Ethnobiology 12(2):203-211.
  • Sobolik, Kristin D. 1988. The Importance of Pollen Concentration Values from Coprolites: An Analysis of Southwest Texas Samples. Palynology 12:201-214.


  • 2004 to 2008 — $250,000.00 — Molecular Coproscopy: Migrations, Sex and Diet of Archaic North American Hunter-Gatherers. with Hendrik Poinar, PI from Social Science and Humanities Research Council, Canada
  • 2012 to 2015 — $300,000.00 — University of Maine Humanities Center: Humanities for the 21st Century. with Scott See and the UMHI from PRE-VUE grant, Office of the President, UMaine
  • 2012 to 2015 — $300,000.00 — College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Advising Center: Increasing Student Satisfaction and Retention. Sobolik, PI with Jeffrey Hecker, Kenda Scheele, Stuart Marrs, and Virginia Nees-Hatlen from PRE-VUE grant, Office of the President, UMaine
  • 2012 to 2017 — $3,100,000.00 — Adaptations to Abrupt Climate Change, A2C2. Jasmine Saros - PI, Paul Mayewski - coPI, Kristin Sobolik - coPI, Mario Teisl - coPI, Ivan Fernandez - coPI from NSF-IGERT


Ph.D. Anthropology, Texas A&M University; M.A. Anthropology, Texas A&M University; B.S. Biology, University of Iowa

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