American Physical Society
Smiling professor

Information for Educators

Overview

Physics teachers and professors are likely to be the only physicists your students know! So when they have questions about physics and what physicists do, they may come to you for advice. In this section you will find suggestions for ways in which you can cultivate your students' curiosity for learning more about how and why physicists study the world around them.

Tools and Resources

Why Study Physics Poster

APS and AAPT worked together to create a "Top Ten Reasons Why You Should Take Physics" poster. These posters (along with other educational posters) are available through the APS website at http://www.aps.org/programs/education/posters.cfm.

Why Study Physics poster10. This is actually a joke; there is no way to get out of a black hole! But the APS outreach website PhysicsCentral has an article about this fascinating subject.

9. Many people who have studied physics report it helps them develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

8. Why the sky is blue
Why the world goes round (you might have heard it was love, but Newton knew the real answer)
The physics of climate change.

7. This report shows that physics majors get among the highest MCAT scores, and the highest LSAT scores of all undergraduate majors.

6. For some of those recession-proof jobs, see our physicist profiles or the University of Texas website.

5. Mathematics provide the tools physicists use to understand the world we live in. Nobel Prize winner Eugene Wigner explored this theme in a famous essay called The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences.

4. Almost a third of all physics bachelor's recipients who go into the private sector take engineering jobs. See more interesting physics employment facts.

3. Keivan Stassun explores the mysteries of the universe.
Marta Dark-McNeese uses lasers to develop new medical techniques.
Kate McAlpine became an international rap sensation with the Large Hadron Rap.
Kenneth Jensen solves the world's energy problems for Makani Power.

2. Without physics there would be no:

1. Physics makes you more attractive to university recruiters, future employers, and that cutie you have your eye on. (You'll just have to trust us on that last one).

Alison Binkowski

Alison Binkowski - Health Policy Analyst

Alison Binkowski has had what many people would consider a "non-traditional" Physics career.  Her passion always drew her towards international health care issues, and some of her personal experiences helped form her concern:  "I thought I wanted to work in...international health, " she says,  "but after a summer in Senegal and Mali with the UN where I ended up being hospitalized in Mali for a week, I became more cognizant of the advantages of working on domestic health issues."

Alison believes that her background in Physics and Computer Science has served her well throughout her work.  "Many fields--including international development and health policy--need more people with strong analytic backgrounds."  For this reason, her training was considered an asset by her academic institutions.  "My analytic training was noted as a primary reason why I was offered a partial academic scholarship in graduate school, and what helped me stand out from other candidates to get my current job at the GAO."

Alison says that she was drawn to Physics because she "was always interested in how the world worked: from why objects fall to what was at the "edge" of the universe. I also found the fact that phenomena could be captured and explained by mathematical formulas elegant, appealing, and even a bit spiritual."