Dr. Julie Skinner

Postdoctoral Associate in Astronomy

Boston University

Welcome! I'm a postdoctoral scholar studying low-mass stars and their companions. I am primarily interested in understanding the solar neighborhood population of the lowest mass stars (M dwarfs and L dwarfs). I am particularly interested in how we can leverage binary systems to learn more about binary evolution, as well as the component stars. I am also leading a project to find planets around ultracool dwarfs, as well as characterize their photometric variability. Read more about my research below.


See my publications at ADS

Low-Mass Stars in Binaries

I study the effects of close white dwarf companions on M dwarf magnetic activity.
Skinner et al. 2017, Accepted to AJ

I've also worked to understand the nearby population of cataclysmic variables.
Skinner et al. 2014

Very Low-Mass Stars

I'm measuring precise distances to the lowest-mass stars using the Discovery Channel Telescopes.

See my poster from Cool Stars 19

Ultracool Dwarfs

I'm leading an effort to find planets around ultracool dwarfs using K2. Check out this article in the BU Daily Free Press about Trappist-1 and our related work.

Trappist-1 Discovery Holds Promise for BU Astronomers

Teaching & Outreach

In addition to classroom teaching, I enjoy speaking to public groups about my work, as well many other topics in astronomy. I am invested in increasing the number of underrepresented groups in astronomy and am excited to work with groups toward this goal.

Program Management

At BU, I managed the Astronomy REU program and developed a career guidance curriculum for summer researchers.

Co-founded BU Women in Astronomy Association for targeted community development and mentorship.

Led numerous workshops on best practices in teaching at the Dartmouth Center for the Advancement of Learning

Classroom Teaching

I work to incorporate many teaching styles and active learning techniques into my classroom.

Co-taught Tufts Univ. course "From the Big Bang to Humankind"

NSF GK-12 Fellow working in an 8th Grade Classroom

TA for numerous Dartmouth Physics and Astronomy Courses

Public Outreach

I enjoy speaking to the public about astronomy and what it means to be an astronomer.

See my poster on a hands-on spectroscopy activity flexible for all ages.

About Me.

In addition to astronomy, I enjoy exploring New England (especially by canoe), playing the piano, knitting, and learning more about baking at the King Arthur Flour Baking Education Center.

Contact Me

Julie N. Skinner
jskinner [at] bu [dot] edu
Room 403
Institute for Astrophysical Research
Boston University
725 Commonwealth Ave.
Boston, MA 02215

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