Education & Public Outreach
I believe that science education is very important and that both students and the public are genuinely interested in learning how the universe works and what scientists do on a day to day basis.
Below, you can read about some of my "EPO" efforts and browse my collection of educational resources.
How to read a scientific journal article (click for PDF)
This worksheet was developed jointly by myself (for an undergraduate-level Astronomy Tutorial class) together with Gail Zasowski (for advanced high school students' research projects) to introduce young scientists to professional journal articles. The worksheet walks students through the different sections of standard journal article and describes what type of information the reader should be able to find in each section. A recommended reading order is given (how many papers do real scientists actually read from start to finish) as well as questions the student should be asking her/himself as she/he reads.
Comments and suggestions are welcome!
Dark Skies, Bright Kids
Dark Skies, Bright Kids (DSBK) is a volunteer outreach group based at the Astronomy Department at the University of Virginia. The core project of the group is to bring an astronomy-themed after school program to local (near UVa) elementary schools. Other educational endeavors include an astronomy art book, "Snapshots of the Universe", written and illustrated by DSBK volunteers. (I made large contributions to the text.)
To learn more about the program and ways to help or get DSBK to your school, visit the Dark Skies, Bright Kids homepage.
|Every school gets to name a mascot. In the picture on the left, Pluto Little Dippy and Meteor Shower sit in front of a poster describing the DSBK program at the American Astronomical Society Meeting in January, 2010. The mascots have their own blog describing their many travels and adventures.|
During the Summer of 2008, I taught ASTR 342: Life Beyond Earth. The course focused on three different aspects of LBE: the formula for life in the universe (a detailed look at the Drake Equation), the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), and space colonization of (i.e., that prospect that humanity would have life beyond Earth). I owe a considerate amount of thanks to the late Bob Rood (who originated the class at UVa) for material and course design ideas. I had the pleasure of TAing the class with Bob Rood a few years previously and thoroughly enjoyed the experience of preparing materials for my own take on the topic.
Although the webpages are no longer available at UVa, below is a snapshot of the class homepage.