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Rebecca Christianson, Ph.D.

Rebecca Christianson, Associate Professor of Applied Physics

Associate Professor of Applied Physics

Milas Hall 258


B.A., Stanford University
Ph.D., Physics, MIT
B.S., Physics and Music, Stanford University

Select Courses Taught

Real World Measurements
Modeling and Controls
Light Microscopy for Scientists and Engineers
Electricity and Magnetism


Confocal microscopy studies of colloidal suspensions Bacteria as active particles Thermal transport measurements of complex fluids


Originally from Minnesota, Dr. Christianson joined the Olin College faculty after completing a postdoctoral fellowship in colloid science at Harvard University. Prior to that, she received her Ph.D. from MIT on work in x-ray and neutron scattering from high temperature superconductors and low dimensional magnetic materials. Her undergraduate degrees in physics and music were granted by Stanford University. Her current research includes confocal microscopy studies of colloidal suspensions, bacteria as active particles, and thermal transport measurements of complex fluids. The bacterial work is performed in collaboration with Prof. Jean Huang and the thermal transport work is performed in collaboration with Prof. Jessica Townsend. Dr. Christianson is a committed teacher who received teaching awards at both Harvard and MIT before coming to Olin. At Olin, she has taught a diverse array of classes in physics and materials science. When not doing physics, she can be seen playing her oboe or singing. She prefers to be outside hiking, canoeing, biking or playing with her kids.

Curriculum Vitae