Rachel J. Beane

Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Natural Sciences, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Rachel's research uses mineral compositions and textures to understand solid earth processes. Research early in her career focused on pressure-temperature-time paths of subduction zone metamorphism with a field focus in the Ural Mountains, Russia. Her current research focuses on exploring the connections between below ground magma chamber processes and above ground large volcanic eruptions with field areas in the western United States and New Zealand. With Bowdoin students, she also studies Maine's bedrock geology.

Awarded the 2003 Sydney B. Karofsky Prize. The prize recognizes the faculty member who "best demonstrates the ability to impart knowledge, inspire enthusiasm, and stimulate intellectual curiosity." As part of the prize, she delivered the Honor's Day Address 2004.

Elected and honored as Geological Society of America Fellow in 2017.  


  • Ph.D., Stanford University; Stanford, California, 1997
  • B.A., Williams College; Williamstown, Massachusetts, 1993

PDF Curriculum Vitae

Undergraduate Research Projects

Rachel enjoys doing research with undergraduates, and strongly encourages students to contact her if they are interested in participating in paid summer research fellowships or senior honors research projects.

Supervolcanoes (NSF award 1250259)

American Mineralogist notable paper (lead author Karina Graeter '14; New Zealand based research)

Scanning Electron Microscope (NSF awards1530963, 0320871, 9951390)

Tapping Into the Secrets of Maine's Coast

Casco Bay Project (NSF award 0126234)


Selected publications. Full list is in C.V. *undergraduate author

Deering, C., Keller, B., Schoene, B., Bachmann, O., Beane, R. and Ovtcharova, M., 2016. Zircon Record of the Plutonic-Volcanic Connection and Protracted Rhyolite Melt Extraction. Geology v. 44, p. 267-270.

Graeter, K.*, Beane, R., Deering, C., Bachmann, O., and Gravley, D., 2015. Formation of rhyolite at the Okataina Volcanic Complex, New Zealand: New insights from analysis of quartz clusters in plutonic lithics. American Mineralogist: Journal of Earth and Planetary Materials v. 100, p. 1778-1789.

Beane, R.J. and Wiebe, R. A., 2012, Origin of quartz clusters in Vinalhaven granite and porphyry, coastal Maine. Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology v. 163, p. 1069-1082.

Sullivan, W.A., Beane, R.J., Beck, E.N.* and Roberts-Pierel, A.M.*, 2011, Testing the transpression hypothesis in the western part of the Cheyenne belt, Medicine Bow Mountains, southeastern Wyoming. Rocky Mountain Geology v. 46, p. 111-135

Sullivan, W.A. and Beane, R.J., 2010. Asymetrical quartz crystallographic fabrics formed during constrictional deformation. Journal of Structural Geology, v. 32 , p. 1430-1443.

Beane, R.J. and Field, C., 2007. Kyanite deformation in whiteschist of the UHPM Kokchetav Massif, Kazakhstan. Journal of Metamorphic Geology v. 25, p. 117-128. 

Beane, R. and Leech, M., 2007. The Maksyutov Complex: The first UHP terrane 40 years later. In Cloos, M., Carlson, W.D., Gilbert, M.C., Liou, J.G., and Sorensen, S.S., eds., Convergent Margin Terranes and Associated Regions. Geological Society of America Special Paper 419, ch. 8, p. 153-170. 

Beane, R. J., 2004.  Using the scanning electron microscope for discovery based learning in undergraduate coursesJournal of Geoscience Education, v. 52, p. 250-253.

Van Vleck, H. E*. and Beane, R. J., 2001.  Geochemical comparison of mafic, felsic and ultramafic rocks in the Hurrican Mountain Melange to the Boil Mountain Ophiolite Complex, west-central Maine.  Atlantic Geology, v. 37, issue 1, p. 3-15.

Beane R. J. and Connelly J. N., 2000. 40Ar/39Ar, U-Pb, and Sm-Nd constraints on the timing of metamorphic events in the Maksyutov Complex, southern Ural Mountains.  Journal of the Geologic Society, London, v. 157, p. 811-822.

Beane R. J. and Wobus R. A., 1999.  Petrogenesis of the Sugarloaf Syenite, Pikes Peak Batholith, Colorado.  Rocky Mountain Geology, v. 34, p. 313-324.

Smith D. R., Noblett J., Wobus R. A., Unruh, D., Douglass, J., Beane R. J., Davis, C., Goldman, S., Kay, G., Gustavson, B., Saltoun, B. and Stewart, J., 1999. Petrology and geochemistry of late-stage intrusions of the A-type, mid-Proterozoic Pikes Peak Batholith (Central Colorado, USA): implications for petrogenetic models.  PreCambrian Research, v. 98, p. 271-305.

Geoscience Faculty Development

Rachel Beane is co-PI of the NSF-sponsored project On the Cutting Edge: A Community Resource Transforming Geoscience Education. She has lead and created materials for multiple faculty development workshops through this project since 2005. http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/index.html

Early Career Faculty: Teaching, Research, and Managing Your Career

  • Lead convener for this national week-long workshop from 2011-2016 (60-70 faculty participants per year)
  • Resources: http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/earlycareer/index.html
  • 2016 Workshop: http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/earlycareer2016/index.html
  • Led sessions on: 
    • Strategic Decisions: Elements of a Successful Career and a Satisfying Life
    • Course Design
    • Lesson Design: Preparing for a Class Period
    • Supporting Diversity and Inclusion in the Classroom
    • Creating a Strategic Plan for Research/Scholarly Activity
    • Improving Class Activities and Assignments Through Review of Your Assignments
    • Managing Service Expectations
    • Reviewing Successful Proposals and Developing a Proposal Idea of One’s Own
    • Applying a Goals-Activity-Assessment Approach to Course Design
    • Getting Published
    • Student Writing in Geoscience Courses
    • Assessing the Effectiveness of Our Teaching
    • Integrating Research into Courses
    • What to Do When Our Teaching Isn’t Going Well
    • Research with Undergraduates
  • Interactive Teaching Strategies Posters 
  • R. Heather Macdonald, Rachel J. Beane, Richelle M. Allen-King, Ellen R. Iverson, Cathryn A. Manduca, David W. Mogk, Carol Ormand, Randall M. Richardson, Barbara J. Tewksbury, and Richard F. Yuretich, 2013. On the Cutting Edge Workshops and Web Resources for Early Career Geoscience Faculty. In The Role of Scientific Societies in STEM Faculty Workshops: A Report of the May 3, 2012 Meeting of the Council of Scientific Society Presidents, p. 46-55. https://www.aapt.org/Conferences/newfaculty/upload/CSSP_May_3_Report_Final_Final_Version_3-15-13.pdf

Teaching Mineralogy, Petrology, and Geochemistry in the 21st Century

Pursuing an Academic Career in the Geosciences webinars

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Bowdoin with focus on faculty professional development and faculty diversity initiatives. 

  • Meet one-on-one with faculty
  • Consortium for Faculty Diversity representative and mentor
  • Diversity and inclusion in faculty hiring and mentoring (liaison for Romney Associates workshops)
  • Faculty Development Committee member for the Course Development and Research sub-committees
  • Lead faculty sessions on:
    • Intentional Pedagogy: A Workshop in Course Design and Class Structure
    • Developing Departmental Learning Goals
    • The Tenure Track at Bowdoin
    • Seeking Mentors: Bowdoin & Beyond
    • The Bowdoin Classroom
    • Time and Task Management
  • Lead academic career sessions for visiting faculty and post-doctoral fellows on
    • The Application
    • The Interview
    • Negotiating an Offer