November 28, 2011

Eminent science educator to deliver Robert Resnick Lecture

A Nobel Prize–winning physicist who is associate director in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy will deliver the Robert Resnick Lecture at Johns Hopkins at 3 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 2, on the Homewood campus.

Carl Wieman, who has conducted extensive research in atomic and laser physics and who shared the Nobel Prize in physics in 2001 for the creation of a new form of matter known as Bose-Einstein condensation, will present “Science Education in the 21st Century: Using the Methods of Science to Teach Science” in the Bloomberg Center for Physics and Astronomy’s Schafler Auditorium.

Wieman is the founding chair of the National Academy of Sciences’ Board on Science Education and has received numerous awards, including the National Science Foundation’s Distinguished Teaching Scholar Award (2001), the Carnegie Foundation’s U.S. University Professor of the Year Award (2004) and the American Association of Physics Teachers’ Oersted Medal (2007) for his work on science education.

Wieman will discuss how science education has remained largely medieval, even though science has advanced rapidly over the last 500 years.

“I will discuss the failures of traditional education practices, even as used by ‘very good’ teachers, and the successes of some new practices and technology that characterize a more effective approach,” said Wieman, who advocates a “research approach” to teaching science.

The lecture honors Johns Hopkins alumnus Robert Resnick, a renowned physics educator.