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Beth Schaefer


Arts and Sciences


Physics and Earth Sciences

Office Location:

Jeffries 142

Office Hours:

  • M 2-4 PM
  • R 11-1 PM

Educational Background

  • PhD, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA
    • Low temperature physics/heavy fermion systems
    • Dissertation:  “The Magnetoresistance of U(Th)Be13 at Low Temperatures and High Magnetic Fields”
  • BA, Boston University, Boston, MA
    • Physics with mathematics Minor

Professional Experience

  • Research Areas: Polarized light, Fluorescence Polarization, XAFS, Heavy Fermion systems
  • Teaching Experience:
    • Physics:
      • General Physics (two semester sequence), physics laboratories, introductory physics for non-science majors (two semester sequence), Electronics, Optics, Vibrations and Waves, Modern Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Mathematical Physics, Solid State Physics, Experimental Physics, Research in Physics, Statistical Physics
    • Mathematics:
      • Differential Equations, Mathematical Physics
    • General Education Courses:
      • Freshman seminar, Integrated Science (two semester lab sequence), Astronomy, freshman general education course (GEN199), NASA workshop (offered for graduate and undergraduate credit), Capstone Course (GEN400)
    • Earth Science Courses:
      • Meteorology and Geology (Capstone for Natural science majors)

Research / Creativity Interest Area

  • BOOK
    • Collett, B. Schaefer, Polarized Light for Scientists and Engineers, Polawave Group, 2012.
    • Schaefer et al., Creation of Partially Polarized Light, in the revise and resubmit process for American Journal of Physics, 2017.
    • Schaefer et all, An estimation of the number and size of atoms in printed period, The Physics Teacher, 49, 2011.
    • Collett and B. Schaefer, Electrodynamic theory of fluorescence polarization of solutions: theory and application to the determination of protein-protein separation, Applied Optics, 48, 2009.
    • Collett and B. Schaefer, The visualization and calculation of polarized light 2. Application of the Hybrid Polarization Sphere, Applied Optics, 47, 2008.
    • Collett and B. Schaefer, The visualization and calculation of polarized light 1. The polarization ellipse, the Poincare sphere and the hybrid polarization sphere, Applied Optics, 47, 2008.
    • Schaefer and E. Collett, A Rotating Waveplate Polarization Analyzer, from the Wolfram Demonstrations Project, http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/ARotatingWaveplatePolarizationAnalyzer/
    • Schaefer, et al, Measuring the Stokes Polarization Parameters, Am. Journal of Physics, 75, 2007.
    • Schaefer (nee Allor) M.J. Graf, L.Smith and Z. Fisk, Magnetoresistance of thoriated Ube13, Physica B 165&166, 1990.
    • Provisional Patent: Method to determine protein separation using the fluorescence polarization spectrum, Inventors: Edward Collett and Beth Schaefer, Feb 12, 2008.
    • Provisional Patent: Method to determine protein separation using fluorescence polarization titration, Inventors: Edward Collett and Beth Schaefer, Jan. 31, 2008.

Additional Information

  • Chair of Math, Physics and Computer Science, 2019-
  • Chair of Math and Computer Science department, 2002 to 2006; 2010 to 2013
  • Chair of Physics Department, 1994-1999, 2002-2013
Committee Service
  • Current service: Chair, Rank and Tenure,
  • Past service: Third Year Review, General Education, TECC, Academic Standards, Faculty Concerns, Program Review, Handbook, various faculty search committees, Curriculum, Balloting, Sabbatical


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