Dr Katie Szkornik

Title: Senior Lecturer
Phone: (+44) 01782 7 33614
Email: k.szkornik@keele.ac.uk
Location: William Smith Building : WS 1.38
Role: Programme Director for BSc and MSci Natural Sciences
Faculty Associate Dean (Learning and Teaching), Faculty of Natural Sciences
Contacting me: Try my office or arrange an appointment by email
Katie Szkornik

I was appointed lecturer in Physical Geography in January 2007. My first degree, BSc. (Hons) Geography, was obtained from Durham University in 2002, where I developed a strong interest in coastal environments, and in particular in reconstructing past sea-level change. My PhD was completed in the School of Geography, University of Plymouth under the supervision of Prof. Roland Gehrels and Prof. Dan Charman and entitled: “Middle to late Holocene sea-level change in western Denmark: A diatom-based study.”

My research interests lie in coastal environments, with a particular focus on reconstructing Holocene sea-level change from salt-marsh sediments.

My research focuses on the use of diatoms and foraminifera as sea-level indicators and the development, application and evaluation of microfossil-based transfer functions as a tool for the reconstruction of past sea-level change.

I am also interested in identifying the driving mechanisms behind longer-term (Holocene) changes in sea level by using relative sea-level data to test glacio- isostatic (GIA) models in collaboration with colleagues at Durham (UK), Ottawa (Canada) and Potsdam (Germany).

I have worked extensively on salt marshes in both the UK and overseas (Denmark, Portugal) and my current research, funded by the Royal Geographical Society and the Royal Society, with support from the Countryside Council for Wales, is examining Holocene sea-level change in the Dyfi estuary, west Wales, UK.

During my time at Keele I have also developed a number of new collaborative research projects, both within Keele and externally. Examples of recent projects I have developed with new collaborators include:

  1. the use of geophysics (GPR, Electrical Resistivity, Seismics) to identify changes in the nature of Holocene coastal deposits (with Dr Nigel Cassidy and Dr Ian Stimpson, Keele University)
  2. establishing forensic search protocols for detection of clandestine burials within coastal environments (with Dr Jamie Pringle, Keele and Mark Harrison (MBE), National Police Improvements Agency)
  3. using diatoms to investigate Holocene environmental change along the Algarve coastline (with Professor Tomasz Boski, Professor Delminda Moura, and PhD student Ana Gomes, Centre for Marine and Environmental Research (CIMA) University of the Algarve, Portugal).

I am a member of the Research Centre for Geography, Geology and Environment.

Sea level work on the Dyfi

Field work on the Dyfi Estuary

Selected Publications

  • Pringle JK, Holland C, Szkornik K, Harrison M. 2012. Establishing forensic search methodologies and geophysical surveying for the detection of clandestine graves in coastal beach environments. Forensic Science International, vol. 219(1), e29-e36. link> doi> link>
  • Szkornik K, Gehrels WR, Murray AS. 2008. Aeolian sand movement and relative sea-level rise in Ho Bugt, western Denmark, during the 'Little Ice Age'. HOLOCENE, vol. 18(6), 951-965. link> doi>
  • Gehrels WR, Szkornik K, Bartholdy J, Kirby JR, Bradley SL, Marshall WA, Heinemeier J, Pedersen JBT. 2006. Late Holocene sea-level changes and isostasy in western Denmark. QUATERNARY RESEARCH, vol. 66(2), 288-302. link> doi>
  • SZKORNIK K, GEHRELS WR, KIRBY J. 2006. Salt-marsh diatom distributions in Ho Bugt (western Denmark) and the development of a transfer function for reconstructing Holocene sea-level changes. Marine Geology, vol. 235.
  • Szkornik K. 2017. Teaching on a Transnational Education Programme: Opportunities and Challenges for Academic Staff. Journal of Geography in Higher Education, vol. 41(4). doi> link>

Full Publications List show

Journal Articles

  • Szkornik K. 2017. Teaching on a Transnational Education Programme: Opportunities and Challenges for Academic Staff. Journal of Geography in Higher Education, vol. 41(4). doi> link>
  • Pringle JK, Holland C, Szkornik K, Harrison M. 2012. Establishing forensic search methodologies and geophysical surveying for the detection of clandestine graves in coastal beach environments. Forensic Science International, vol. 219(1), e29-e36. link> doi> link>
  • Szkornik K, Gehrels WR, Murray AS. 2008. Aeolian sand movement and relative sea-level rise in Ho Bugt, western Denmark, during the 'Little Ice Age'. HOLOCENE, vol. 18(6), 951-965. link> doi>
  • Gehrels WR, Szkornik K, Bartholdy J, Kirby JR, Bradley SL, Marshall WA, Heinemeier J, Pedersen JBT. 2006. Late Holocene sea-level changes and isostasy in western Denmark. QUATERNARY RESEARCH, vol. 66(2), 288-302. link> doi>
  • SZKORNIK K, GEHRELS WR, KIRBY J. 2006. Salt-marsh diatom distributions in Ho Bugt (western Denmark) and the development of a transfer function for reconstructing Holocene sea-level changes. Marine Geology, vol. 235.
  • Gomes A, Witkowski A, Dabek P, Boski T, Moura D, Szkornik K, Kurzydlowski K. 2013. Syvertsenia iberica (Cymatosiraceae): a new estuarine diatom genus characterized by the position of its process. PHYTOTAXA, vol. 142(1), 25-36. link>

Other

  • Szkornik K, Gehrels WR, Kirby JR. 2006. Salt-marsh diatom distributions in Ho Bugt (western Denmark) and the development of a transfer function for reconstructing Holocene sea-level changes. MARINE GEOLOGY (vol. 235, pp. 137-150). link> doi>
  • SZKORNIK K, GEHRELS W, BRADLEY S, MILNE G. The glacio-eustatic contribution to sea-level rise in the mid to late Holocene constrained by relative sea-level data from western Denmark. Quaternary International (vols. 167 - 168, p. 410). doi>

Foundation Year

  • ESC-00005 (Foundation Year) Global Warming or a new Ice Age?

Year One

  • ESC-10032 Global Warming or a new Ice Age?
  • ESC-10039 Fundamentals of Physical Geography 
  • ESC-10038 The Practice of Physical Geography
  • ESC-10057 Introductory Geography for the Environmental Sciences (delivered in China)
  • NAT-10001 Science and Society

Year Two

  • ESC-20049/50 Dynamic Geographies (Hydrology and Oceanography) 
  • ESC-20029 Practical Physical Geography 
  • GEG-20009 Geographical Research Training
  • ESC-20036 Palaeoclimatology and Quaternary Environments
  • Iceland field course (Geography)

Year Three

  • ESC-30027/ESC-40040 Coastal Environments
  • GEG-30006 Geography Double Dissertation
  • GEG-30008 Geography Single Dissertation

Recent research income:

2009

  • Royal Society Research Grant for project entitled: “Holocene sea-level change in the Dyfi Estuary, west Wales, UK. £14,960.
  • UK Resource Centre for Women in Science, Engineering and Technology Travel Bursary towards attendance at the 6th International Geoscience Programme Project 495, Conway, South Carolina, USA. 25th – 31st October 2009. £500
  • Quaternary Research Association Conference Fund towards attendance at the 6th International Geoscience Programme Project 495, Conway, South Carolina, USA. 25th – 31st October 2009. £200

2008

  • Royal Society Conference Grant towards attendance at the 5th and the INQUA Commission on Coastal and Marine Processes Joint Meeting, Faro, Portugal. 27th October - 1st November 2008. £690
  • Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) Small Research Grant. “Holocene sealevel change in the Dyfi Estuary, west Wales, UK.” £2500

2007

  • Royal Society Conference Grant (2007/R2) towards attendance at the XVII INQUA Congress, Cairns, Australia. £1020
  • Quaternary Research Association Conference Grant towards attendance at the XVII INQUA Congress, Cairns, Australia. £600

2005

  • Natural Environmental Research Council "The glacio-eustatic contribution to global sea-level rise in the late Holocene." AMS 14C dating allocation number 1117.1005. (PI. W.R. Gehrels) £11,700

2003

  • NERC PhD studentship (NER/S/A/2003/11314). School of Geography, University of Plymouth. Approx. £30,000

Peer-reviewed contributions:

  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Murray, A.S. 2008. Aeolian sand movement and relative sea-level rise in Ho Bugt, western Denmark during the Little Ice Age. The Holocene, 18 (6): 951 – 965.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Kirby, J. 2006. Salt-marsh diatom distributions in Ho Bugt (western Denmark) and the development of a transfer function for reconstructing Holocene sea-level changes. Marine Geology, 235 (1-4): 137-150.
  • Gehrels, W.R., Szkornik, K., Bartholdy, J., Kirby, J.R., Bradley, S.L., Heinemeier, J., Pedersen, J.B.T. and Marshall, W.A. 2006. Late Holocene sea-level changes and isostasy in western Denmark. Quaternary Research, 66(2): 288 - 302.

Other reports and contributions:

  • Szkornik, K. 2007. Middle to late Holocene sea-level change in western Denmark: A diatombased study. PhD abstract. Quaternary Newsletter, 114: 72.
  • Szkornik, K. 2007. Report on the IGCP 495 (UK working group) and INQUA commission on coastal and marine processes (NW Europe working group) joint sea-level meeting and fieldtrip. St Andrews, Scotland 1st – 4th July 2007. Quaternary Newsletter, 114: 33 – 38.
  • Szkornik, K. 2007. Middle to late Holocene sea-level change in western Denmark: A diatombased study. Unpublished PhD thesis, University of Plymouth.
  • Szkornik, K. 2004. Holocene deposits in the northern part of Ho Bugt. Locality 4.1, day 4, the mainland coast of the Danish Wadden Sea. In: Fieldtrip guide B1, sediments and morphodynamics along the Danish West Coast from Skagen to the Wadden Sea, 6th International Conference on Tidal Sedimentology, Copenhagen, Denmark, Institute of Geography, University of Copenhagen. 78pp.

Published abstracts:

  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Bradley, S.L. and Milne, G.A. 2007. The glacio-eustatic contribution to sea-level rise in the mid to late Holocene constrained by relative sea-level data from western Denmark. Proceedings of the XVII INQUA Congress, Cairns Australia. Quaternary International, 167 – 168 (Supplement 1): 410.

Conference presentations:

  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Bradley, S.L., Milne, G.A., Pedersen, J.B.T., Bartholdy, J. and Charman, D.J. 2009. A 9000 year record of relative sea-level change in western Denmark: Glacial isostatic modelling, driving mechanisms and regional comparisons. International Geoscience Programme Project 495 6th International Meeting, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA, 25th – 30th October 2009.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Juggins, S. and Charman, D.J. 2009. Assessing the accuracy of diatom-based transfer functions in Holocene sea-level studies: An example from Ho Bugt, western Denmark. International Geoscience Programme Project 495 and the INQUA Commission on Coastal and Marine Processes Joint Meeting, Egmond ann Zee, the Netherlands, 21st – 24th June 2009.
  • Szkornik, K. and Marshall, W.A. 2008. Holocene sea-level changes in the Dyfi Estuary, west Wales, UK. International Geoscience Programme Project 495 and the INQUA Commission on Coastal and Marine Processes Joint Meeting, Faro, Portugal. 27th October - 1st November 2008.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Charman, D. J. 2008. Using diatom-based transfer functions to reconstruct middle to late Holocene changes in relative sea level: problems, pitfalls and potential solutions. William Smith Meeting 2008: Observations and causes of sealevel changes on millennial to decadal timescales. The Geological Society, London. 1 - 2nd September 2008.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Bradley, S.L. and Milne, G.A. 2007. The glacio-eustatic contribution to sea-level rise in the mid to late Holocene constrained by relative sea-level data from western Denmark. INQUA XVII Congress, Cairns, Australia. July 23rd – August 3rd 2007.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Charman, D. 2007. The use of diatoms as sea-level indicators in Ho Bugt, western Denmark. UK working group of IGCP Project 495 and the INQUA Commission on Coastal and Marine Processes joint meeting. St Andrews, Scotland. 1st – 4th July 2007.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Charman, D. 2007. Comparing quantitative and qualitative reconstructions of relative sea level. An evaluation of relative sea-level data from Ho Bugt, western Denmark. UK working group of IGCP Project 495 and the INQUA Commission on Coastal and Marine Processes joint meeting. St Andrews, Scotland. 1st – 4th July 2007.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Charman, D.J., 2006. The use of diatoms as sea-level indicators in Ho Bugt, western Denmark. British Diatomists' Meeting 2006, Malham Tarn Field Studies Centre, North Yorkshire, UK. October 27th-29th 2006.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Kirby, J., Kent, M and Charman, D.J., 2006. Using diatombased transfer functions to reconstruct Holocene sea-level changes: Highlighting the need for caution in model selection and in interpreting results. Quaternary Land-Ocean Interaction: Natural and Human Forcings on Coastal Evolution. IGCP 495 Meeting, Balneário Camboriú, Santa Catarina, Brazil. September 17th – 22nd 2006.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Murray, A., 2006. Little Ice Age sand invasion of the Ho Bugt salt marshes in Western Denmark during low relative sea level. Quaternary Land-Ocean Interaction: Natural and Human Forcings on Coastal Evolution. IGCP 495 Meeting, Balneário Camboriú, Santa Catarina, Brazil. September 17th – 22nd 2006.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R. and Murray, A., 2006. Little Ice Age sand invasion of the Ho Bugt salt marshes, western Denmark during low relative sea level. HOLIVAR Open Science Meeting, University College London, UK. June 12th – 15th 2006.
  • Gehrels, W. R., Szkornik, K., Kirby, J., Bradley, S., Milne, G., Bartholdy, J., Pedersen, J.B.T., Heinemeier, J. and Marshall, W., 2005. Salt-marsh stratigraphy and late Holocene sea-level changes in Ho Bugt, Western Denmark: Implications for the 'regional eustatic' history of the North Sea. Late Quaternary Coastal Changes: Sea Level, Sediment Forcing and Anthropogenic Impacts. INQUA & IGCP-495 joint meeting. Dunkerque, France, 28th June - 2nd July 2005.
  • Szkornik, K., Gehrels, W.R., Kirby, J., Bartholdy, J., Pedersen, J.B.T. and Marshall, W., 2005. Salt-marsh stratigraphy of Ho Bugt, Western Denmark and the implications for Holocene sea-level reconstructions. Quaternary Research Association 4th International Postgraduate Symposium, School of Geography, University of Plymouth, UK. August 31st - September 2nd 2005.
  • Szkornik, K., Kirby, J. and Gehrels, W.R., 2005. The use of salt-marsh diatoms and sealevel indicators in Ho Bugt, Western Denmark. Late Quaternary Coastal Changes: Sea Level, Sediment Forcing and Anthropogenic Impacts. INQUA & IGCP-495 joint meeting. Dunkerque, France, 28th June - 2nd July 2005.
  • Szkornik, K., Kirby, J. and Gehrels, W.R., 2004. Middle to late Holocene sea-level changes in Denmark: A diatom based study. The Quaternary Research Association Third International Postgraduate Symposium, Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Belgium Geological Survey, Brussels, Belgium. September 14 – 17th 2004.
  • Szkornik, K., Kirby, J. and Gehrels, W.R., 2004. Middle to late Holocene sea-level changes in Denmark: A diatom based study. Tidalites 2004, 6th International Conference on Tidal Sedimentology, Copenhagen, Denmark. August 2 – 5th 2004.