Research & Scholarship
Biological physics is a dynamic field of study. We are trying to observe the microscopic with high resolution and innovative microscopes, and model biological processes with physical principles. The apparatus I am in the process of building is a multiphoton microscope for multiphoton laser scanning microscopy (MLSM). MLSM is a fluorescence imaging technique that is becoming widely used for studying microscopic structures, such as material characterization and biological tissue. It is unique in that it focuses the laser to a small focal plane to increase the probability two or more incident photons combining to excite a fluorophore to generate a measurable optical response. Thus, MLSM provides high resolution images of the nonlinear microscopic world, in 3D. MLSM is an attractive alternative to confocal microscopy because it reduces phototoxicity, has less background signal, and increases imaging depth. I am in the process of learning different programs for protein folding, protein engineering, and building physical models of biological processes.
Physics Education Research
I am also passionate about physics education research. Specifically, I want to determine if there are adequate data acquisition tools available for visually impaired students to learn physics as effectively as students that can see. By adapting researched based pedagogies such as Interactive Lecture Demonstrations and Workshop Physics for students who are unable to visualize data, learning gains can be compared to published results to determine if new tools need to be developed for blind students to learn physics effectively.