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Foundations and Frontiers of Physics Education Research: Puget Sound 2012

June 21, 2012 - June 24, 2012 in Diablo, WA at the North Cascades Environmental Learning Center

The second FFPERPS (Foundations and Frontiers of Physics Education Research: Puget Sound) conference was held June 21-24, 2012, at the North Cascades Environmental Learning Center, about 60 miles east of Burlington, WA.

FFPERPS is a regional conference designed to enhance regional communication and collaboration and to increase the visibility of work that is of high quality but not well known.  The conference provides a forum for examining and articulating the current state of the field, exploring future directions, and discussing ways to pursue promising avenues of research.  The structure of the conference, based on that of the FFPER conference held in Bar Harbor, Maine, includes plenary talks, targeted sessions, contributed poster sessions, and substantial free time for informal interactions.

The 2012 conference featured five plenary speakers engaged in a wide variety of exciting research and scholarship around the learning and teaching of physics (plenary speaker biographies):

Louis Deslauriers, University of British Columbia, Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative
Joss Ives, University of the Frasier Valley, Department of Physics
Corinne Manogue, Oregon State University, Department of Physics
Amy Robertson, Seattle Pacific University, Department of Physics
Jessica Thompson, University of Washington, School of Education

In addition, the conference featured a series of targeted sessions in which participants were offered the opportunity to analyze data from different theoretical perspectives:

Engaging with data in physics education research:  A "buffet" of tools and perspectives
Physics education researchers draw from and formulate a variety of theoretical perspectives and research methodologies to inform data collection and analysis. In an effort to promote transparency, 'try on' different perspectives, and identify potential areas for collaboration, participants rotated through three sessions to explore three different perspectives. In each, the session leader presented a framework that he or she is working with currently. Participants were then invited to employ the framework to analyze and interpret a selection of research data.

Targeted session leaders were:

Leslie Atkins, California State University - Chico, Department of Physics
Paula Heron & Peter Shaffer, University of Washington, Department of Physics
Rachel Scherr, Seattle Pacific University, Department of Physics

Questions?  Contact one of the conference organizers:

Sam McKagan, American Association of Physics Teachers and McKagan Enterprises
Andrew Boudreaux, Western Washington University
Krishna Chowdary, The Evergreen State College
Amy Robertson, Seattle Pacific University