Ryan Botts, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Mathematics

Dr. Botts earned his PhD in Mathematics from Ohio University. Prior to doctoral work, he earned an MS in Mathematics from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and a BS in Mathematics from the same institution. He is a recipient of the Ohio University Graduate Assistant Outstanding Teaching Award, and has served as chair of the Graduate Student Senate Grant Committee. Dr. Botts has worked as a high school math teacher and with the California State Early Assessment Project, which promotes student success on college math entrance exams.

Statistical learning, bioinformatics, data and applications are all areas he is interested in. Some days he works as a bioinformatician interested in using the genomic sequences of antibiotic resistant bacteria to better understand the sources, dissemination and distribution of clinically relevant samples found in contaminated urban wetlands. Other days he is an applied mathematician working in numerical analysis, specifically in high-dimension machine-learning with tensor products, trying to build learning algorithms for novel applications. Working on a wide variety of interdisciplinary problems has led Dr. Botts into research on how to train the next generation of interdisciplinary scientists.

More information on current research in collaboration with Dr. David Cummings can be found at microbiology.pointloma.edu.

In his free time, Dr. Botts stays active. He enjoys playing volleyball, running, biking, and fly fishing.


  • Ph.D., Mathematics, Ohio University
  • M.S., Mathematics, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
  • B.S., Mathematics, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

Courses Taught

  • MATLAB – CSC 311
  • R for Computational Science – CSC 311
  • Service Learning I – CSC/ISS/MTH 496
  • Service Learning II – CSC/ISS/MTH 497
  • Pre-Calculus Mathematics – MTH 123
  • Pre-Calculus for the Sciences – MTH 133
  • Calculus I/Modeling Lab – MTH 164/121
  • Introduction to Statistics – MTH 203
  • Fundamentals of Elementary Mathematics I – MTH 213
  • Fundamentals of Elementary Mathematics II – MTH 223
  • Linear Algebra – MTH 233
  • Problem Solving – MTH 303
  • Differential Equations – MTH 333
  • Calculus Based Statistics – MTH 362
  • Mathematical Modeling – MTH 373
  • Real Analysis – MTH 424
  • Independent Study in Mathematics/Statistics – MTH 491
  • Special Topics in Mathematics – MTH 492

Experience in Field

  • Associate Professor of Mathematics, Point Loma Nazarene University 2015 – Present
  • Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Point Loma Nazarene University 2010 – 2015
  • The National Academies Pacific Northwest Regional Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education in Biology, Olympia, WA 2011
  • Mini-symposium on Multilinear Computation and Application at SIAM Regional Conference, Pittsburgh, PA 2010
  • Research Assistant, Ohio University-Athens 2007 – 2010
  • Cal State Early Assessment Project: Promote student success on college math entrance exams and effectively place them in courses 2007
  • Secondary School Teacher, Templeton High School 2006 – 2007

Professional and Community Involvement

  • West Coast Biological Sciences Undergraduate Research Conference oral presentation co-chair and poster session judging coordinator. San Diego, CA April 2016.
  • Mathematical Association of America Sectional Meeting poster presentation judge. Irvine, CA, January 2014, San Diego, CA, April 2015, and Los Angeles, April 2016.
  • California Basic Educational Skills Test Reading and Mathematics Item Review Conference. Development and analysis of CBEST test items. Evaluations Systems (Pearson) Sacramento, CA September 2013.
  • Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL) conference planning committee for “Transforming STEM Education: Inquiry, Innovation, Inclusion, and Evidence” San Diego, CA 2012.

Awards and Honors

  • National Institutes of Health (NIH). Capture and Characterization of Self-Transmissible Plasmids from Urban Wetlands Encoding Clinically Relevant Antibiotic Resistance Genes. $237,790. D. E. Cummings, R. T. Botts, and E. M. Top. May 2013 – April 2016.
  • PLNU Wesleyan Center for 21st Century Studies. Training Undergraduates to Perform Sequence Analysis on Self-Transmissible Plasmids Captured in Urban Wetlands. $2000. R. Botts. May 2013.
  • PLNU Alumni Association. The Analysis and Characterization of CTX-M Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Urban Wetlands. $2000. R. Botts and D. Cummings. May 2013.

Dissertations, Presentations, and Publications


  • R. Botts, L. Carter and C. Crockett. Blended Learning in a Quantitative Literacy Course. Primus. Submitted.
  • T.R. Borgogna, J.-L Borgogna, J. A. Mielke, C. J. Brown, E. M. Top, R. T. Botts, D. E. Cummings. High Diversity of CTX-M Extended-Spectrum β-Lactamases in Municipal Wastewater and Urban Wetlands. Microbial Drug Resistance ahead of print. doi:10.1089/mdr.2015.0197  (2015).
  • R. Botts, Ale Jan Homburg, and Todd R. Young. The Hopf Bifurcation with Bounded Noise. Discrete Cont. Dynam. Systems - A. 32: 2997-3007 (2012).
  • M d’Avezac, R. Botts, M. J. Mohlenkamp, and A. Zunger. Learning to Predict Physical Properties using Sums of Separable Functions.  SIAM Journal on Scientific Computing Vol. 33(6): 3381-3401 (2011).
  • R. Botts and L. Carter.  Lessons Learned: A Journey in Computational Science. ACMS 18th Biennial Conference Proceedings. (2011).
  • R. Botts. The Learning and Analysis of Regulatory Networks Using Sums of Separable Functions. Ohio University Libraries (2010).


  • R. Botts, L. Carter, C. Crockett, G. Crow, J. Jimenez, and M. Zack. Hybrid Classes in Mathematics and Computer Science. ACMS Nineteenth Biennial Conference, Ancaster, ON, Canada June 2015.
  • R. Botts. Adventures in Machine Learning with Sums of Separable Functions. Machine Learning Seminar Series. SPAWAR, San Diego, CA December 2014.
  • R. Botts. Antibiotic Resistance in Urban Wetlands and the Bioinformatics Challenges it Presents. IBEST Seminar Series. Moscow, ID, July 2014.
  • Botts, R. and Carter, L. Lessons Learned: A Journey in Computational Science. ACMS Eighteenth Biennial Conference, Santa Barbara, CA, June 2011.