Dr Rankin works on understanding and countering barriers to the increased representation of women and members of other under-represented groups in the Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) workforce. She is especially interested in how to develop the professional management skills of researchers and enable people to be effective and inclusive in leadership roles (she often presents workshops on topics such as negotiation, and time management). She supports taking a structural (institutional level) and process driven approach to diversification. Her background as an experimental particle physicist has led to a focus on how to improve the functioning of teams, especially those that cross discipline boundaries and work on 'grand challenge' problems (such as sustainability). She has recently started to become involved in workforce development to address the need for convergence ready researchers.
PHYS 1240 - Sound and Music
Explores the physical processes that underlie the diversity of sound and musical phenomena. Topics covered include the physical nature of sound, the perception of sound, the perception of pitch and harmony, musical instruments, synthesizers and samplers, and room acoustics. Geared toward nonscience majors. Department enforced prereq., high school algebra or equivalent. Should not be taken by students with a math MAPS deficiency.
PHYS 7810 - Special Topics in Physics
Various topics not normally covered in the curriculum; offered intermittently depending on student demand and availability of instructors. May be repeated up to 7 total credit hours.