Paul Saulnier


Professor in Physics

Paul was born and raised in Connecticut, which explains why he has been a life-long New England Patriots fan. His undergraduate degrees are from the University of Hartford (where his Dad worked). There he received a B.S. in Physics and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering. After graduation he spent two years working for General Electric Aerospace division where he served as a project engineer on a space-based program. At the time, many people said that he would never go back to school once he started working, but he would proved them wrong by continuing his studies at the University of Delaware. There he received a M.S. degree in physics by working on a theoretical investigation of a certain class of nonlinear differential equations and a Ph.D. degree in experimental optical physics. After leaving graduate school, he was fortunate enough to land a tenure-track faculty position at Carroll College (in Wisconsin) where he taught for two years. He was hired by Gustavus in 1993 and has since taught some 20 plus different courses ranging from a First Term Seminar, to 3CC Senior Seminar, to General Physics, to Quantum Mechanics, to the History and Art of Film Noir. He has been actively involved in student/faculty research and has mentored 30+ Gustavus undergraduate research associates and has been involved in securing external funding for teaching and research. All of Paul’s research papers have involved undergraduates, with many serving as lead authors. His research has focused on light scattering experiments and an interdisciplinary biophysics program that examines the behavior of grouped organisms in nature. In addition to teaching and research, Paul has been active on a variety of campus committees, including Faculty Senate, Personnel Committee, and the Faculty Development Committee. But the service that he is most proud of is the fact that he has served for 14+ years as coordinator of the Faculty Shop Talk series ( Paul is married to Amy and they have two sons, Kevin and Brian. Outside of academics and family, Paul enjoys cooking, wine, film, music, and learning to play guitar.


B.S. Hartford, 1983; M.S., Ph.D. Delaware, 1988, 1991

Courses Taught


PHY-225 (Quantum Universe), PHY-360 (Optics), and PHY-360 (Optics Lab)

Synonym Title Times Taught Terms Taught
PHY-360Optics Lab172014/SP, 2013/SP, 2012/SP, 2011/SP, 2010/SP, 2008/SP, 2007/SP, 2005/SP, 2004/SP, 2003/SP, 2001/SP, 2000/SP, and 1999/SP
PHY-360Optics132014/SP, 2013/SP, 2012/SP, 2011/SP, 2010/SP, 2008/SP, 2007/SP, 2005/SP, 2004/SP, 2003/SP, 2001/SP, 2000/SP, and 1999/SP
PHY-201Classical Physics I Lab92010/FA, 2009/FA, 2004/FA, 2000/FA, and 1999/FA
NDL-100Film Noir72016/JN, 2014/JN, 2013/JN, 2012/JN, 2011/JN, 2009/JN, and 2008/JN
PHY-216Electromag. Univ. Lab62015/FA, 2013/FA, and 2012/FA
PHY-350Electromagnetic Theory62014/SP, 2004/SP, 2003/SP, 2001/SP, 2000/SP, and 1999/SP
PHY-365Project in Physics52014/SP, 2013/SP, 2012/SP, 2011/SP, and 2008/SP
PHY-305Experimental Modern Physics Lab42015/FA, 2007/FA, 2006/FA, and 2005/FA
PHY-305Experimental Modern Physics42015/FA, 2007/FA, 2006/FA, and 2005/FA
PHY-271Electronics and Instrumentation Lab42013/SP, 2012/SP, 2011/SP, and 2010/SP
PHY-241Classical Physics III Lab42011/FA, 2003/FA, and 2002/FA
PHY-200Classical Physics I42010/FA, 2009/FA, 2000/FA, and 1999/FA
PHY-260Modern Physics42008/SP, 2007/SP, 2006/SP, and 2005/SP
PHY-240Classical Physics III32011/FA, 2003/FA, and 2002/FA
PHY-215Electromag. Universe22013/FA and 2012/FA
PHY-230Applied Mathematics for Physics and Engineering22012/SP and 2011/SP
PHY-300Mechanics22007/FA and 2006/FA
PHY-100Physical World22006/JN and 2003/JN
PHY-122General Physics I with Calculus22005/FA and 2004/FA
PHY-390Quantum Mechanics22003/FA and 2002/FA
PHY-310Electronics and Instrumentation II22001/SP and 2000/JN
PHY-380Thermal and Statistical Physics22000/FA and 1999/FA
PHY-399Senior Seminar12015/FA
CUR-399Senior Seminar12013/FA
NDL-113Science Fiction Film12010/JN
PHY-172General Physics II with Calculus12006/SP
PHY-171General Physics II Lab12006/SP
PHY-170General Physics II12006/SP
PHY-120General Physics I12005/FA
FTS-100First Term Seminar12004/FA
NDL-136Science Fiction Film12004/JN
PHY-310Electronic II Lab12001/SP
PHY-108Computer as a Tool12001/JN

Courses prior to Spring semester 1999 are not displayed.