Significant learning combines the logical and the intuitive, the intellect and the feelings, the concept and the experience, the idea and the meaning. When we learn in that way, we are whole.
Carl Rogers, 1983
The Yale Physics Department has had a long tradition of faculty members who have been excellent and passionate teachers. Across the board, the upper-level courses for physics majors continue to be popular and receive great student evaluations.
In recent years, the rejuvenated interest in the STEM fields around the nation has driven the need to make physics more accessible to non-majors and to reevaluate how physics is taught at the introductory level. For this reason, the Yale Physics Department has been working closely with the Yale Center for Teaching and Learning to develop courses that put emphasis on activities and group work to enhance student learning. Several faculty members have participated in the annual National Academy Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education, to refine and develop their classes based on the latest evidence and pedagogy-based techniques for effective teaching. Many graduate students and postdocs are now Scientific Teaching Fellows, after attending Phys 530, a one semester course led by the Yale Center for Scientific Teaching.
In the following pages we give an overview of the ongoing initiatives and efforts in the department.
Examples of Innovative Teaching:
- Phys 170-171 Introductory Physics for the Life Sciences
- Phys 180-181 Active-learning format
- Phys 200-201 flipped class
- Phys 260-261 Innovative content
- Phys 530 Scientific Teaching Fellow Course
- Physics of Dance
- Movie Physics-Online class