Bruce Kirchoff

Bruce Kirchoff

Professor Emeritus

404 Eberhart Building


Scientific communication, plant morphology and development, systematics


Ph.D., Duke University


My current work focuses on helping scientists speak clearly and concisely about their work. A number of scientific communication resources are linked at the bottom of this page.

My scientific work focused on plant evolution from structural and developmental standpoints. A major theme in this work was flower structure and development in the plant order Zingiberales, the order that contains the culinary gingers and bananas. I also developed and tested methods for improving the use of morphological characters in evolutionary studies and developed active visual learning software for teaching plant identification. A short video introduction to this work can be found here, with a longer introduction here.

Online Resources


Plant Diversity –

Plant Systematics –

Teaching Materials

Materials for a course on Plant Diversity

Active Learning in Biological Evolution

Active Learning Software

Scientific Communication Online Courses (Canvas, free)

Course on scientific titles

Course on scientific abstracts

Materials for a course on scientific titles

Materials for a course on scientific abstracts

Scientific Communication Resources

Canvas course exports for the titles and abstracts courses

Materials for a course on scientific titles

Materials for a course on scientific abstracts

Scientific Poster Templates on OSF

Scientific Poster Templates on FigShare

Recent Publications


Kirchoff, B. K. 2021. Presenting Science Concisely. CABI, Oxfordshire, UK


Romanov, A., K. Ly, and B. K. Kirchoff. 2021. Use of Polyethylene Glycol as an Embedding Medium Produces Results Similar to those of Paraffin Wax Embedding. Edinburgh Journal of Botany 78: DOI:

Kirchoff, B. K, H-F Liu, and J-P Liao. 2020. Inflorescence and Flower Development in Orchidantha chinensis T. L. Wu (Lowiaceae; Zingiberales): Similarities to Inflorescence Structure in the Strelitziaceae. International Journal of the Plant Sciences 181: 716-73 & Dryad Digital Repository DOI: 10.5061/dryad.jdfn2z37t

Schwartzman, R., B. K. Kirchoff, and K. M. Cuny. 2019 Roles of Communication Centers in Communicating Science: A Multi-Disciplinary Forum. Communication Center Journal 5: 81-101 (

Cao, L, M. F. Newman, B. K. Kirchoff, and L. P. Ronse de Craene. 2018. Developmental evidence helps resolve the evolutionary origins of anther appendages in Globba (Zingiberaceae). Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 189: 63-82. DOI: 10.1093/botlinnean/boy071

Kirchoff B and Bruenn R (2018) How Do Banana Flowers Develop?. Front.
Young Minds. 6:60. doi: 10.3389/frym.2018.00060

Kirchoff, B. K. 2017. Inflorescence and flower development in Musa velutina H. Wendl. & Drude (Musaceae), with a consideration of developmental variability, restricted phyllotactic direction, and hand initiation. International Journal of the Plant Sciences 178: 259-272. DOI: 10.1086/691143. Dryad Digital Repository DOI: 10.5061/dryad.5j8p8

Kirchoff, B. K. 2016. An Experimental Test of a Biodynamic Method of Weed Suppression: The Biodynamic Seed Peppers. Organic Farming 2 (1): 17-20

Kirchoff, B. K. 2016. Algae, Fungi, & Higher Plant Life Cycles. PlantEd Digital Library

Kirchoff, B. K., P. Delaney, M. Horton and R. Dellinger-Johnston. 2014. Optimizing Learning of Scientific Category Knowledge in the Classroom: The Case of Plant Identification. CBE Life Sciences Education 13: 425-436 (DOI: 10.1187/cbe.13-11-0224)

Burrows, G., G. L. Krebs and B. K. Kirchoff. 2014. ‘Visual Learning – Agricultural Plants of the Riverina’ – a new application for helping veterinary students recognize poisonous plants. Bioscience Education DOI: 10.11120/beej.2014.00028

Complete list of publications in google scholar