College of Science and Health | DePaul University > Faculty & Staff > Faculty A-Z > Mary Bridget Kustusch

Mary Bridget Kustusch

  • Assistant Professor
  • Physics
  • (773) 325-0389
  • ​Byrne Hall 219
Dr. Mary Bridget Kustusch earned her BS in Physics from North Park University, PhD in Physics from North Carolina State University and spent two years as a postdoctoral scholar at Oregon State University working on the Paradigms in Physics project. She primarily focuses on Physics Education Research (PER).

Kustus​ch specializes in exploring connections between mathematics and physics and the use of multiple representations, particularly kinesthetic and embodied experiences as mediating resources for students. Her current research concentrates on group decision-making and problem solving, as well as the development and use of meta-cognitive and sense-making skills. Drawing on several research traditions (e.g., physics, education, cognitive psychology), she employs both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. Additionally, Kustusch uses the results in the design and assessment of curricular materials and in the professional development of current and future teachers and physicists.

An active member of the American Association of Physics Teachers and American Physical Society, she has been an invited speaker and organized invited sessions for conferences.  Her articles are published in the American Journal of PhysicsPhysical Review Special Topics - Physics Education ResearchThe Physics Teacher, Journal of College Science Teaching, and Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings.

A native Chicagoan, Kustusch spends much of her time outside of DePaul with her large extended family where she enjoys all that the city has to offer. Her favorite way to relax is by knitting or reading a science fiction or detective story with a cup of tea. She has not owned a car since 2004, so she can often be seen walking to the “L”.


Selected Publications​:

M.B. Kustusch, "Assessing the impact of representational and contextual problem features on student use of right-hand rules", Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. (2016).

D. Roundy, M.B. Kustusch, C.A. Manogue, “Name the experiment! Interpreting thermodynamic derivatives as thought experiments”, American Journal of Physics, 82, 39-46, (2014).

M.B. Kustusch, D. Roundy, T. Dray, C.A. Manogue, “Partial derivative games in thermodynamics: A cognitive task analysis”, Physical Review Special Topics - Physics Education Research, 10, 010101, (2014).

M.B. Kustusch, J.D.H. Gaffney, R. Beichner, “The real prize inside: Learning about science and spectra from cereal boxes”, The Physics Teacher, 47, 450-453, (2009).

J.D.H. Gaffney, E. Richards, M.B. Kustusch, L. Ding, R. Beichner, “Scaling up education reform”, Journal of College Science Teaching, 37, 48-53, (2008).