Taylor Rae Morrell

Taylor Rae MorrellPh.D. Geological Sciences

Office Miller 302
Email 15trim@queensu.ca
Website www.linkedin.com/in/taylor-rae-morrell
Thesis Topic Upper Plate Expression of Reactivated Basement Structures During Orogenesis: A Multi-Orogen Comparison
Supervisors Dr. Laurent Godin and Dr. Renaud Soucy La Roche (INRS)

Research Interests

Structural geology; tectonics; field geology; metamorphic petrology; geochronology

About Taylor

Taylor Rae Morrell is a Ph.D. candidate in the Queen’s Tectonics Research Laboratory (QTRL) group. She obtained her Bachelor of Science (Honours) with a Specialization in Geological Sciences from Queen’s University and is a proud alumna of the department. She started in the department in the Master of Science program and upgraded to the Ph.D. program in 2022. Taylor Rae has conducted extensive field work through her academic career, in the Indian Himalaya (2022 and 2023), the North American Cordillera (2023), and the Grenville Province (2019 and 2021). Her Ph.D. research focusing on characterizing the upper crustal record of reactivated basement structures in orogenic systems, focusing on the Himalaya and the North American Cordillera. She uses field mapping and data collection, structural methods (i.e. quartz crystallographic preferred orientation analysis and microstructural analysis), petrochronology, and metamorphic petrology to provide a multi-faceted approach to her research. When not dreaming about her next opportunity to get into the field, Taylor Rae enjoys working as a teaching assistant in the department. In her work as a teaching assistant, Taylor Rae remains committed to increasing accessibility and diversity through her teaching methods. Taylor Rae is also a dedicated volunteer in the department, on the graduate student council as president (2021- 2022), secretary (2022-2023), and treasurer (2023-2024) and with the graduate student-run conference, Advances in Earth Sciences Research (AESRC – 2023).


  • NSERC Canadian Graduate Scholarship – Doctoral (2023-2026)
  • NSERC Canadian Graduate Scholarship – Master’s (2021-2022)
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship – Master’s (2020-2021)
  • NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award (2019 and 2020)
  • Geological Society of America Student Research Grant Award (2023)
  • Queen’s Graduate Dean’s Travel Grant Award (2023)
  • Endeavour Silver Corp. Teaching Assistant Award (2023)
  • Dr. William Pearson Teaching Assistant Award (2020 and 2023)
  • Roger and Lorna Smith Named Teaching Assistant Award (2019)


Conference Proceedings:

Morrell, T. R., Godin, L., Soucy La Roche, R., and Cottle, J. (2023). Recognizing Indian Basement Faults based on Along-Strike Diachronous Metamorphism in the Himalayan Metamorphic Core of Far West Nepal [Oral Conference presentation]. Geological Society of America (GSA) Connects (In-person, October 15-18, 2023). Geological Society of America Abstracts with Program: vol. 55, no. 6.

Morrell, T. R., Godin, L., and Soucy La Roche, R. (2022). Along-Strike Diachronous Thermo-Kinematic Evolution of the Himalayan Metamorphic Core in Western Nepal [Oral Conference presentation]. Canadian Tectonics Group / Geological Association of Canada Annual Fall Workshop (Virtual, October 1, 2022). Program with Abstracts: p. 13-14

Morrell, T. R., Godin, L., and Soucy La Roche, R. (2021). A Thermo-Kinematic Study of the Himalayan Metamorphic Core in Far West Nepal: Implications for Along-Strike Tectonometamorphic Variations in Active Orogens. Canadian Tectonics Group / Geological Association of Canada Annual Fall Workshop (Virtual, Sept 29, 2021). Program with Abstracts: p. 11.

Peer-Reviewed Journal Publications:

Spencer, C. J., Davies, N. S., Gernon, T. M., Wang, X. McMahon, W. J., Morrell, T. R. I., Hincks, T., Pufahl, P. K., Brasier, A., Seraine, M., Lu, G.-M. (2022). Composition of continental crust altered by the emergence of land plants. Nature Geoscience, 8 pgs.

Spencer, C. J., Cavosie, A. J., Morrell, T. R., Lu, G. M., Liebmann, J., and Roberts, N. M. W. (2022). Disparities in oxygen isotopes of detrital and igneous zircon identify erosional bias in crustal rock record. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 577.