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Archive: Fall 2016

Fall 2016 Awards

Strand: Organizer

Creating Inclusive Environments at Conferences: Support for Invited Speakers
Dimitri Dounas-Frazer, Research Associate

At the 2016 AAPT Winter Meeting, the Committee on Diversity in Physics (CoDP) and the Committee on Professional Concerns (CoPC) agreed to co-sponsor an invited panel session called "Creating Inclusive Environments at Conferences," to be held in Winter 2017. The panel will highlight best practices for increasing inclusiveness at AAPT meetings. In addition, the panel will provide space for AAPT members to ask questions about ongoing AAPT efforts, including the AAPT Code of Conduct. This proposal seeks travel support for Christopher Atchison, an expert in issues of disability and accessibility. Atchison has agreed to be a panelist in the "Creating Inclusive Environments at Conferences" session at the 2017 AAPT Winter Meeting.  

Strand: Innovation and Community Resources

Project: PER Consultant Directory
Stephanie Chasteen and Sarah "Sam" McKagan

The PER community is deeply active, and our interest in furthering knowledge and using that
knowledge to support education reform is quickly outstripping the available time of tenure-stream faculty in PER. Yet, physics faculty and departments have a growing need for our skills and knowledge, and the PER community has a need for additional expertise to support our work (e.g., external evaluators). We propose to leverage existing expertise in the PER community to support these needs by creating an online directory of consultants who are available to provide a variety of PER-related services. A simple intake form will allow experienced consultants to list their skills, and novice consultants to seek experience and mentorship. A public directory will enable those seeking consultants to locate professionals to support their projects. This directory could serve a community purpose similar to PER Jobs, as a central, ongoing resource.

An Audio Piece on 2- and 4-year College Partnerships in PER
Angela Little

Members of the PER community have recently surveyed where research occurs in our field and found it to be dominated by studies in calculus-based physics at large, predominately white, 4-year research universities. In addition, 2-year college work is almost non-existent (Cid & Kanim, in preparation; Kanim, personal communication). 2- and 4-year college partnerships are one of many strategies our field may consider employing in the face of such limitations and their implications for equity and research generalizability. However, partnerships across institution type require close attention to navigating differences in stakeholder interests and power dynamics. This audio piece will explore lessons learned from one longstanding partnership in physics education across Harold Washington College and Chicago State University. To connect to broader themes, the piece will also include the perspectives of experts in multi-institution partnerships. The goal is to support both 2- and 4-year college faculty interested in developing new partnerships.

Introducing qualitative research to emerging researchers through a two-week participatory workshop and year-long virtual community of practice
Eleanor Sayre

This proposal engages emerging members of the physics education research community in qualitative observation-based studies as a part of a multi-institutional and diverse research team. The proposal consists of two parts: an initial summer research experience, modeled after Seattle Pacific University's IRISE, and an academic-year-long series of virtual meetings. Project objectives are to: foster development of qualitative research methodology, including acquiring, cataloging, transcribing, and analyzing video data; work toward a more diverse research community, both within PER and across disciplines; and develop a model experience that promotes publication and dissemination of results, with tangible benefits to faculty for tenure and promotion. The participatory experience uses as context RIT's project IMPRESS (Integrating Metacognitive Practice and Research to Ensure Student Success), a two-week experience for first-generation and deaf/hard-of-hearing (DHH) incoming STEM majors involving reflective, metacognitive scientific practice. RIT IRB consent has been obtained; in three years of IMPRESS, 2 of the 200 students approached have declined to participate. As a result, researchers have a fertile environment for developing and investigating new research questions centered around undergraduate STEM majors asking questions, designing and conducting experiments, and reflecting upon their learning.

West African International Summer School for Young Astronomers (WAISSYA)
Linda Strubbe

WAISSYA is a short course in astronomy for undergraduate science students from across West Africa, held as a collaboration between scientists from North America, Europe and Africa. There is growing interest in astrophysics in West Africa, thanks especially to the Square-Kilometer Array (a new radio observatory). WAISSYA has been held twice so far in Nigeria, and is to be held in July 2017 in Accra, Ghana. Our mission is to empower West African students to become scientific leaders, using astronomy as a gateway. The two-week WAISSYA program consists of workshops on active learning for instructors (Week 1), and a curriculum for students focused on inquiry-based labs and peer instruction (Week 2). We plan to learn about and study teaching and learning experiences of our West African students and instructor-colleagues, in order to support these groups further in the future.

Strand: Travel

Trevor I. Smith

Funding to attend 2017 Winter AAPT meeting and present work.  

Rabindra Bajracharya

Funding to attend 2017 Winter AAPT meeting and present work.