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).

Allison Porter

Allison Porter - Biophysics Technician

Porter had always been interested in the sciences,  and had showed special interest in becoming a doctor,  partially due to her aunt's fight with ovarian cancer. In high school,  she had a physics class that she particularly enjoyed. In the class,  she was introduced to astrophysics that allowed students to create a simulated solar system by determining objects masses and velocities.  

When going through her undergraduate years,  she wanted to choose a major that gave some breadth to her education,  and her good experience in her high school physics class helped steer her towards astrophysics. "I think a lot of it is from just a philosophical standpoint,  studying things that are much larger than we can really comprehend,  I was very interested in big bang cosmology,  the origins of the universe."

After graduating from Harvard,  Porter entered the Miss America pageant,  representing her state of Washington. She chose the pageant due to its goal to develop well-rounded women,  and currently employs her role as Miss Washington to raise awareness of cancer prevention,  treatment,  and funding.

She is currently in the MD Program at the University of Washington.