Dr. Cindy Rankin

Questions such as “I wonder how this works?” or “Why does it do that?” characterize Dr. Cindy Rankin’s life-long approach to science.  Over the past many years, these questions have progressively narrowed in focus to how the body works (physiology), how we move (neuromuscular biology) and how we learn (science education).  The courses that Cindy has developed and teaches reflect these 3 areas of interest, ranging from courses designed to help non-Psio majors gain an understanding of their own physiology by utilizing real-life scenarios to those for medical and graduate students to develop critical thinking, problem solving and expertise in specific areas of Neuromuscular biology. 

Cindy has been very active in the development of undergraduate education at the university level as well, having spent many years as a member, and then as chair, of the University-wide General Education Committee and as a member of the Undergraduate Council. Her passion to improve science education has led to the development of the Physiological Sciences Teaching Workshop where the issues related to the art and practice of science education are discussed in hopes of helping physiology grad students develop their own effective teaching style and skills. And most recently, as Director of the new Physiology Honors Academy, she works together with a handful of dedicated Student members (the Honors Student Advisors) to help Physiology majors optimize their Honors educational experience, undertake meaningful research projects and graduate with Honors in Psio.

Life outside of work is shared with her husband Tom Elliott, a general and vascular surgeon, and an ever-present dog or two.  Cindy and Tom love to travel, to cook and of course to eat, sampling the cultures they visit.  Nights in town are frequently filled with UofA sporting events, the theater and ballet.  Having grown up in Southern California, Cindy is also passionate about the ocean and its beaches, loving to scuba dive, sail and swim.  And after 30+ years of living in Tucson, Tom and Cindy consider themselves almost natives and are both very active in the preservation of the ecology and beauty of the Sonoran desert.

Contact: crankin@email.arizona.edu

Office: Biological Sciences West 274

Office Phone: 520-621-3104