Lauren Rast

Assistant Professor This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Campbell Hall Room 484
(205) 934-8186

Research and Teaching Interests: Physics education research, eLearning, development of physics courses for the online environment, educational technologies for in-person and online courses

Office Hours: : T 12:30 - 1:30 p.m., Th 1:00 - 2:00 p.m., and by appointment


  • B.S., University of Alabama at Birmingham, Physics
  • Ph.D., University of Alabama at Birmingham, Physics
  • National Research Council Fellow, NIST Boulder

Dr. Rast received her Ph.D. in Physics in 2010 from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She was the 2006 recipient of Samuel B. Barker Award for Excellence in Graduate Studies at the Master’s Level. Her graduate work, under a NIH-NIBIB fellowship, combined theoretical, computational, and experimental techniques towards the development of novel nanomaterials with biomedical and energy applications. As an NRC Postdoctoral Fellow in the Applied Chemicals and Materials Division at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Dr. Rast’s work focused on the mesoscale modeling and design of novel metamaterials for plasmonics and photonics.

In 2014, Dr. Rast joined the Department of Physics as an Instructor and Leader of the UAB Physics Online Education Project. Her interests include physics education research, evidence-based curriculum design, and educational technology. Dr. Rast is a member of the UAB eLAC Enabling Technologies Committee and the QEP Advisory Council.

Recent Courses

  • Introductory Physics (PH100)
  • Physical Science Online (PHS101-QL)
  • College Physics I Online (PH201-QL)
  • General Physics I (PH221)
  • General Physics II (PH222)

Select Publications

  • L. Rast and V.K. Tewary, Nanophotonics: From Quantum Confinement to Collective Interactions in Metamaterial Heterostructures in Modeling, Characterization and Production of Nanomaterials, V.K. Tewary and Y Zhang, Ed., Elsevier, Cambridge UK (2015).
  • L. Rast, Plasmonic Properties of Metallic Nanostructures, Two Dimensional Materials, and Their Composites in Applied Spectroscopy and the Science of Nanomaterials, P. Misra, Ed., Springer, Singapore, (2014).
  • L. Rast, T. J. Sullivan, and V. K. Tewary, Stratified Graphene/Noble Metal Systems for Low-Loss Plasmonics Applications, Phys. Rev. B, 87(4) 045428- 045437 (2013).
  • L. Rast and J. G. Harrison, Computational Modeling of Electromagnetically Induced Heating of Magnetic Nanoparticle Materials for Hyperthermic Cancer Treatment, Pr. Electromagn. Res. S., 1(1) 910 (2010).
  • L. Rast and A. Stanishevsky, Aggregated Nanoparticle Structures Prepared by Thermal Decomposition of Poly(vinyl)- N-Pyrrolidone/Ag Nanoparticle Composite Films, Appl. Phys. Lett. 87, 223118, (2005).

Academic Distinctions & Professional Memberships

  • Samuel B. Barker Award for Excellence in Graduate Studies
  • National Research Council NIST-ARRA Fellow
  • The Physics Teacher Education Coalition