Mark B. Schneider

Curricular Reform Interests--Cooperative Learning

My curricular reform interests focus on incorporating investigative, cooperative learning in introductory and intermediate level courses. These efforts consist of Discovery-Based Physics, a variant of Priscilla Laws Workshop Physics, which is an introductory course, and a Computational Physics course.

Research Interests--Fundamental Properties and Precision Measurements

My research interests center on fundamental properties and interactions in nuclear, atomic, and optical physics. I have collaborated with Gerald Gabrielse's group at Harvard in their efforts to trap antiparticles in Penning traps and produce anti-hydrogen atoms. At Grinnell, the trapping interests have led to efforts to produce low energy positrons, necessary for the trapping process. We have developed a low-energy positron spectrometer specifically for this purpose so that we can quantitatively assess the relative merits of various positron slowing techniques. I am also involved in experimental investigations of the quantum nature of light, and interference effects in one and two photon systems.

New Science Project/Grinnell Science Project

I helped create, and for a decade served as co-director of, Grinnell College's New Science Project, (now known as the Grinnell Science Project) an effort to attract and retain minorities and students from other at-risk groups into science majors.

Recent and in-progress Publications

"A Demonstration of the Quantum Nature of Conventional Light," Claire P. Christensen and Mark B. Schneider, in preparation for submission to Physical Review A.

"Teaching Quantum Mechanics in Introductory Physics," Mark B. Schneider, in preparation for submission to The Physics Teacher.

"Discovery-based Gauss's Law," Mark B. Schneider, American Journal of Physics, vol. 72, pp. 1272-1275 (2004).

"Simple Experimental Realizations of Quantum Mysteries", invited presentation at the Gordon Research Conference on Teaching and Research in Quantum Mechanics, Mount Holyoke College, June 2002.

"A simple experiment for discussion of quantum interference and which-way measurement", Mark B. Schneider and Indhira LaPuma, American Journal of Physics, vol. 70, pp. 266-271 (2002).

"Encouragement of Women Physics Majors at Grinnell College: A Case Study," Mark B. Schneider, The Physics Teacher, vol 39, p. 280 (May 2001).

"An Integrating Low-Energy Positron Spectrometer," Mark Schneider, Sarah Hodges, Karmin Mauritz, Catherine Nisbett, and Meghan O'Connell, BAPS 44, 731 (1999).

I am currently revising a draft of a sophomore level analytical mechanics text that I wrote and used in the spring of 2001. Several publishers have expressed interest, and I hope to get that text published in the near future.

Folk Music

In my free time, I enjoy playing folk music with the Too Many String Band and Cruiscín Lán. A schedule of their engagements and other folk music in Grinnell can be found on my Folk Music Events page. Aside from enjoying just singing traditional songs and teaching them to others, I also play "old-timey" banjo, mandolin, guitar, autoharp, tin whistle, and Appalachian dulcimer.


Send questions or corrections to This page was last updated on September 16, 2004.

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