Spring 2015 Meeting of the New England Section of the American Physical Society

April 24-25, 2015

The Spring Regional Meeting of the New England Section of the American Physical Society will take place at Boston University. View the poster.

Confirmed Speakers

  • Scott Bunch, Boston University
  • Andrew Duffy, Boston University
  • Bennett Goldberg, Boston University
  • Tony Heinz, Columbia University
  • Eric Mazur, Harvard University
  • Tomas Palacios, MIT
  • Saif Rayyan, MIT
  • Jeff Williams, Bridgewater State

Meeting Sessions

  • Latest optical, electronic, and device physics in 2D crystals
  • Online physics education for undergraduate and high-school students
  • Blending online and in-person courses at research-intensive universities
  • Preparing future physics faculty – the next generation

Planned Sessions include:

Advances in the Physics of Two-Dimensional Crystals: The recent discovery of a new class of atomically thin materials – graphene being the most famous of these – has brought with it an exciting and fruitful period of scientific and technological research. Among the most exciting properties of 2D materials are their flexibility, transparency, and biocompatibility, and thus the possibilities of enabling a wide variety of new physics. 2D transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) such as MoS2, WS2, WSe2, and black phosphorus – single atomic layers of phosphorous (phosphorene) – are attractive since they can be produced in single layers, and unlike graphene, possess a band gap, making them more useful for optical and electronic device applications. The unprecedented flexibility and lets one apply large strains which will allow integration of devices on flexible, biocompatable substrates for use in medicine for external or internal sensing and stimulation, or perhaps wearable consumer electronics.

Online and Blended Learning in Physics: Physics education research and practice has demonstrated the success of improved student learning through evidence-based active learning in studio-style and flipped classroom environments in dozens of departments around the country. Further, recent advances in fully online physics classes at ASU, BU and MIT have explored new approaches to online laboratories, student engagements, and learning research. We explore the latest advances in this mixed pedagogical space of online and blended learning, asking where are we going in undergraduate physics education?

Preparing Future Physics Faculty: The excellence of current and future STEM education lies in part with the preparation of current graduate students and postdocs in evidence-based STEM teaching. By preparing future faculty, we both enhance the effectiveness of teaching fellows in today’s courses and ensure that tomorrow’s instructors teach with a solid background in evidence-based STEM instruction that we know works. In this session we explore both online and in-person efforts to train graduate students and postdocs in teaching and learning. Further, we showcase the most effective graduate student peer mentoring programs focused around teaching.

We invite contributions for oral and poster sessions on these and general physics topics. Contributions from undergraduate and graduate students are particularly encouraged. A stipend of up to $150 is available to cover expenses for students presenting at the meeting.