UHM Physics Department Colloquia

Astronomy from the Ground Up: Applying the research process to undergraduate teaching

by Dr. Geoffrey Mathews (University of Hawaii)

Tuesday, 25 April 2017 from to (Pacific/Honolulu)
at Watanabe Hall ( 112 )
Description
The field of Astronomy Education Research (AER) has largely focused on the
teaching of Astronomy for general education and neglected the preparation of
the next generation of astronomers: students receiving degrees in Astronomy
and Physics majors seeking minors as an introduction to the field.  Despite
a 34% growth in the number of undergraduate astronomy degrees granted by US
universities from 2006 to 2015, there has been no effort to either tabulate
what is taught in undergraduate Astronomy programs, nor to come to an
agreement regarding what should be taught in an undergraduate astronomy
program.

Here, I discuss efforts over the past 4 years to answer to this question,
attempts to improve the teaching of astronomy, and I lay out a roadmap for
future efforts.
Material: