Elizabeth F. McCormack
Dean of the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, Professor of Physics
Bryn Mawr College
F21 Class of 1996
Elizabeth F. McCormack received her bachelor's degree in Physics and Astronomy from Wellesley College in 1983 and her Ph.D. in Physics from Yale University in 1989. Thereafter, she joined the Laser Photophysics and Photochemistry group at Argonne National Laboratory as a Postdoctoral Research Associate. In 1990 she was awarded an Alexander Hollaender Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship. In 1991 she became a Staff Physicist and worked for another four years at Argonne. In 1995 she left Argonne to join the faculty at Bryn Mawr College. There, she initiated a new research program in molecular physics with funding from a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the NSF. In 2001 she was promoted with tenure to the associate rank. While at Bryn Mawr College she has been a Fulbright Senior Research Scholar Fellow at the University of Paris XI (Orsay, France) and an ERCOFTAC Guest Scientist at the Paul Scherrer Institute in Switzerland. Her research uses techniques in laser spectroscopy to study fundamental characteristics and excited state decay dynamics of small molecules. Her current work emphasizes applying two-color, four-wave mixing in both the frequency and time domains to obtain structural and dynamical information on highly excited states.
An F21 Member of Project Kaleidoscope since 1996, she sees PKAL as a vital source of information and inspiration to improve her teaching and effectiveness as a proponent of good practices and sustainable change in physics education. She has served as a physics curriculum consultant to Effat College, a new college for women in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. She is involved in establishing a regional network of faculty and K-12 teachers and administrators in Philadelphia to build K-16 connections in the area. And, as a member of the National Task Force on Undergraduate Physics, she is pursuing ways to leverage the work of PKAL into efforts of the American Physical Society (APS) and the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) to highlight and disseminate "what works" in effective Physics education.