Science Education in the Modern World; Why and How
The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) welcomes 2001 Nobel Prize Laureate in Physics, Carl Wieman, Ph.D., to the IUPUI campus as part of its CTL Winter Lecture Series. This lecture series honors nationally recognized scholars who have made a contribution to their discipline as well as teaching and learning within their discipline.
In this lecture, Wieman will talk of how, guided by experimental tests of theory and practice, science has advanced rapidly in the past 500 years. Guided primarily by tradition and dogma, science education meanwhile has remained largely medieval. Research on how people learn is now revealing how many teachers badly misinterpret what students are thinking and learning in traditional science classes and from exams. However, research is also providing insights on how to do much better. The combination of this research with modern information technology is setting the stage for a new approach that can provide the relevant and effective science education for all students is needed for the 21st century. Wieman will discuss the needs of science education in the modern world for all citizens, and describe what research is telling us about how the brain learns, the failures of traditional teaching practices to meet today's educational needs, and teaching practices that have been shown to be much more effective.
This event is free and open to the public. The event will begin with a reception from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. followed by the lecture from 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Carl Wieman received his B.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1973 and his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1977. He taught at the University of Colorado from 1984 to 2006 as a Distinguished Professor of Physics and Presidential Teaching Scholar. In January 2007, he joined the University of British Columbia as the Director of the Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative although he retains a part-time appointment at the University of Colorado to head the science education initiative he founded there. These collaborative initiatives are aimed at achieving departmental-wide sustainable improvement in undergraduate science education. Wieman has carried out research in a variety of areas of atomic physics and laser spectroscopy and has been recognized with numerous awards and honorary degrees including the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2001 for the creation of Bose-Einstein condensation.
During his career, Wieman has worked on a variety of research projects and innovations in teaching physics to a broad range of students, including the Physics Education Technology Project, that creates educational online interactive simulations and studies their effectiveness. He also conducts research on student beliefs about physics and chemistry, learning of quantum physics, and on problem-solving skills. His education work has been recognized with the National Science Foundation’s Distinguished Teaching Scholar Award in 2001, the Carnegie Foundation’s U.S. University Professor of the Year Award in 2004, and the American Association of Physics Teachers’ Oersted Medal in 2007. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and serves on the Academy Board on Science Education. He is also a member of the U.S. National Academy of Education.