Department Contact Information

Physics Department

Location: 180-204
Phone: (805) 756-2448
Fax: (805) 756-2435
Chair: Jennifer Klay

Support Physics

Website Update

Laura Ríos

Laura Ríos

Assistant Professor

Office: 180-610
Phone: 805.756.2458


  • Ph.D., University of California, Irvine, Physical Chemistry
  • B.A., Oberlin College, Chemistry

Research Interests

  • Realigning class evaluation tools to more directly support learning goals
  • Investing in upper-division laboratory courses
  • Creating authentic, meaningful research experiences for undergraduates


I completed my PhD in Chemistry at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) in 2017 under an NSF Graduate Research fellowship. Most recently, I was a Research Associate at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU) in PER with a collaborator appointment in JILA-NIST.

My current work focuses on deliberate investment into, and improvement of, upper-division laboratory courses. My research builds upon a fundamental assumption that lab courses offer a unique learning environment to develop the skills for empirical inquiry, and thus should reflect the authentic practices of experimental physics. I also firmly believe that all students should have the opportunity to engage in meaningful research. While the powerful effects of these opportunities are well-documented, they are getting more scarce.
Drop by my office in 180-610 or send me an email to discuss what we can do to cultivate a great experience for you!




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