Barbara J. Speziale

Professor & Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies

Contact Information

Phone: 864 656-1550
FAX: 864 656-1480

Find me on LinkedIn


  • Ph.D. Zoology, Clemson University, 1985
  • M.S. Botany, University of Minnesota, 1977
  • B.A. Biology & English Literature (double major), State University of New York at Binghamton, 1974

Research Interests

  • Dr. Speziale's academic interests and activities encompass phycology, limnology, science education and outreach. Her biology research interest is the ecology and taxonomy of freshwater algae. Her current programs focus on science education, undergraduate research, and first generation college students
  • She currently directs the SC Life Program, with funding ($5.4 million) from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Science Education Program. SC Life supports science graduate courses for in-service middle and high school teachers, research opportunities for undergraduates and high school students, and direct outreach to K-12 students, with a special focus on underrepresented groups.
  • She directs the FIRST Program, initiated with funding from the National Science Foundation, to provide academic and social supports for students that are the first generation in their families to attend college.
  • She directs Clemson’s campus-wide Creative Inquiry undergraduate research program in which teams of students work with faculty mentors over the course of several semesters on projects of their own design.
  • Previous science education programs include an interactive water quality videoconference, the high school biology curriculum, Biology: A Community Context, molecular biology lessons for high schools.
  • She developed several award-winning water quality education programs for the general public. These include the 4H20 - Pontoon Classroom program for children, and the Life at the Waters Edge book.  

Selected Publications


  • Roth, et al. 2004. Life at the Water's Edge: A Shoreline Resident's Guide to Natural Lakeshore and Streamside Buffers for Water Quality Protection in South Carolina, Clemson University Bulletin, WQL24, 147 pp.
  • Speziale, B. J., W. H. Leonard and J. E. Penick. 1998. Biology: A Community Context -- Student Resource, South Western Educational Publishing , (ISBN:0-538-68573-5) 198 pages.
  • South Carolina Home A Syst: An Environmental Risk-Assessment Guide for Protecting Water Quality, Clemson University Bulletin WQL-21, 84 pages.
  • Lippert, R. M., B. J. Speziale, J. H. Palmer, and G. C. Delicio. 1998. Evaluating an Internet Distance Learning Course on Sustainable Agriculture. Journal of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Education 27:42-48
  • Barbiero, R., S. J. Ashby and B. J. Speziale. 1996. Effects of Artificial Destratification on Cyanobacteria Blooms in East Sidney Lake, NY. Hydrobiology 331:109-120
  • Speziale, B. J. and L. A. Dyck. 1992. Lyngbya infestations: comparative taxonomy of Lyngbya wollei comb. nov. (Cyanobacteria). Journal of Phycology 28(5): 693-706.
  • Speziale, B. J., E. G. Turner and L. A. Dyck. 1991. Physiological characteristics of vertically-stratified Lyngbya wollei mats. Lake and Reservoir Management 7:107-114
  • Speziale, B. J. and D. R. Helms. 1991. Answer Guide to Accompany More Biology in the Laboratory, 179 pp., (ISBN: 0-87901-550-0), Worth Publishers, NY, NY
  • Speziale, B. J., S. P. Schreiner, P. A. Giammatteo and J. E. Schindler. 1984. Comparison of N,N-dimethylformamide, dimethyl sulfoxide and acetone for extraction of phytoplankton chlorophyll. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 41:1519 -1522.
  • Brugam, R. B. and B. J. Speziale. 1983. Human disturbance and the paleolimnological record of change in zooplankton of Lake Harriet, Minnesota. Ecology 64:578 - 591.

Selected Research Grants

2007-2009   Inquiry-Based Learning - A Companion Course for Biology, (Speziale, Allard and Cook) SC State Department of Education,$216,985
2007        Clemson University MAT Noyce Scholarship Program for Middle Grades Education, National Science Foundation, (Weigert, Medford, Speziale) $460,712.
2006-2010     SC Life: Mountains to Molecules, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Science Education Program, (Speziale) $2,000,000
2005-2010   CU-STEP: Enhancing the Undergraduate Experience Through Research and Curriculum Development, NSF, (Speziale, Ballard, Ohland, Williams, Appling) $1,989,621
2003-2004   Locally-Focused and Issue-Oriented Youth Water Quality Education for South Carolina, USEPA Region IV, (Speziale) $23,076
2002-2006   Explorations of South Carolina Life, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Biological Sciences Education Program, (Speziale et al.) $1,800,000
2002-2003   Improving Teachers’ Knowledge in Modern Genetics and Biotechnology, 
U.S. Dept of Education / SC Commission on Higher Education, (Ballard & Speziale) $45,531
2000-2004   Developing Lakeshore Landscapes for Water Quality Protection an Improvement, USEPA /SC DHEC, (Speziale & Pinkerton) $121,300
1999-2000   BIOSC 730: SC LIFE Topics for Teachers, SCITI Course Development Grant Program, SC Commission of Higher Education, (Ballard & Speziale) $9,070
1999-2002   Reduction of Nonpoint Source Pollution in Three Impaired Watersheds by Implementation of South Carolina Home A Syst U.S. Environmental Protection Agency / SC Department of Health and Environmental Control, (Speziale) $186,877
1998-2002   Biodiversity: A Theme for Improving Biology Education in South Carolina Middle Schools Through College, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Undergraduate Biological Sciences Education Program, (J. Zimmerman as PI), $1,600,000.
1997-1999   LakeFair, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency / SC Department of Health and Environmental Control, (Speziale)$64,199
1996-1997   Reaching Secondary Teachers Through the Electronic Classroom  (with James Palmer), subcontract from University of Florida, USDA Agricultural Telecommunications grant, $10,073
1995-1997   Water Quality Awareness: Implementation of South Carolina Home A Syst (Yates & Speziale), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency / SC Department of Health and Environmental Control,  $137,292
1993-1994   South Carolina Forest Environmental Education, South Carolina Universities Research and Education Foundation, (Leonard & Speziale) $95,223
1991-1996   Spatial and Vertical Distributions of Phytoplankton in Large Reservoir Systems, U. S. Army Engineers, Waterways Experiment Station, (Schindler & Speziale) $161,000
1986-1987    Derivation of a Management Strategy for Lyngbya Blooms: the Use of  Lyngbya magnifica as a Model, Water Resources Commission for Aquatic Plant Research, (Dyck & Speziale) $98,990

Selected Honors and Awards

2010    South Carolina Governor’s Award for Scientific Awareness
2008   Martin Luther King, Jr. Award for Excellence in Service
2006   Clemson University Board of Trustees Award for Faculty Excellence
2006   4H20- Pontoon Classroom selected as a 4-H Program of Distinction
2005   Life at the Water’s Edge publication named a SC Notable State Document  
2005    Life at the Water’s Edge received the Renewable Natural Resources Foundation Outstanding Achievement Award  
2005   4H20 Pontoon Classroom received the Natural Resources Conservation Service Youth Environmental Award
2004-2006   Clemson University Board of Trustees Award for Faculty Excellence
2004   Society for Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry/ Menzie-Cura Environmental Education Award
2002      4-H20 – Pontoon Classroom named a 4-H Centennial 2002 Program of Excellence

Recent Courses

  • Natural History of the Piedmont and Mountains of South Carolina
  • 4-H20 Aquatic Systems
  • Agricultural Sustainability; Environmental Factors  
  • Principles of Biology
  • South Carolina Forest Environmental Education, K-12 teachers institute
  • Life, Earth and Physical Science for Middle School Teachers
  • Plants Useful To Man 

Extension Programs

  • South Carolina Home A Syst
  • 4H20 - Pontoon Classroom
  • LakeFair

Related Websites

Professional Affiliations

  • American Society of Limnology and Oceanography
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • National Association of Biology Teachers
  • North American Lake Management Society
  • Phycological Society of America
  • South Carolina Science Council