Our department’s core values for faculty guide how faculty focus their time and efforts. Core values for faculty are:
Research. Physics faculty direct student undergraduate research during the academic year and as part of summer research programs and conduct personal research contributing to their own professional growth. Faculty give oral or poster presentations at professional conferences, departmental colloquia, or university seminars, write grant proposals, and publish papers that may include students as co-authors.
Engaging and Effective Teaching. Physics faculty teach with interactive engagement, which has been shown to be more effective than traditional lectures. Faculty assess learning in their classroom, glean from educational research, implement effective pedagogy, and continually improve.
Interdisciplinary Collaborations. Physics faculty work with students and other faculty in math, computer science, chemistry, biology, exercise science, education, religion and philosophy, game design or other areas in the university in the design of courses, collaborative projects, or other pursuits. Faculty contribute to larger efforts of the university such as general education, service learning, honors program, Phi Beta Kappa, and global studies. Expertise of current physics and astronomy faculty are: theoretical physics, experimental biophysics, computational physics, and observational astronomy.
Theory, Experiment, and Computation. Physics faculty teach students to be strong in theory, experimental physics, and computational physics. Although all of us, as students and faculty, tend to have strengths in only one or two of these areas, it is important to be minimally proficient in all three areas. All physics courses incorporate learning outcomes in at least two of the three areas.
Mentoring. Physics faculty are mentors. Faculty help connect students with summer internships, career opportunities, and graduate schools. Faculty guide students in navigating career paths. Faculty help students mature and grow as young adults so that they can make the right choices in order to be competitive in their careers and satisfied in their personal and professional lives. Faculty are role models.
Outreach. Physics faculty encourage and train students to be ambassadors for science and to serve the community through science education. Physics faculty participate in community outreach through science education.