Excellence in Physics Education Award

To recognize and honor a team or group of individuals (such as a collaboration) or, exceptionally, a single individual, who have exhibited a sustained commitment to excellence in physics education. The award, presented annually, consists of a $5,000 monetary award, a certificate citing the achievements of the group or individual, and an allowance for travel expenses to the APS April Meeting where the award is presented.

Establishment & Support

This award was established in 2006 and endowed with support from the Richard Lounsbery Foundation, Vernier Software, WebAssign, Physics Academic Software, PASCO Scientific, General Atomics Sciences Education Foundation and numerous individual contributions.

Rules & Eligibility

A commitment to excellence in physics education may be evidenced by, but is not restricted to, such accomplishments as:

  • A specific program or project that has had a major ongoing influence on physics education at the national level.
  • Outstanding teacher enhancement or teacher preparation programs over a number of years.
  • Long-lasting professional service related to physics education that has had a demonstrated positive impact.
  • Outreach programs.

Nominations are open to groups from all nations, regardless of the geographic site at which the work was done. Nominations are active for three years.

Nomination & Selection Process

Deadline: Friday, June 1, 2018

The nomination must include:

  • A letter of not more than 5,000 characters evaluating the qualifications of the nominee(s).

In addition, the nomination should include:

  • A biographical sketch.
  • A list of the most important publications.
  • At least two, but not more than four, seconding letters.
  • Up to five reprints or preprints.

To start a new or update a continuing nomination, please see the Prize & Award Nomination Guidelines.

2019 Selection Committee Members: TBD


Serving a diverse and inclusive community of physicists worldwide is a primary goal for APS. Nominations of qualified women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and scientists from outside the United States are especially encouraged.

2018 Recipients

Ariel Paul
University of Colorado Boulder

Carl Wieman
Stanford University

Emily B. Moore
University of Colorado Boulder

Kathy Perkins
University of Colorado Boulder

Michael Dubson
University of Colorado Boulder

Sam Reid
University of Colorado Boulder

Wendy K. Adams
Colorado School of Mines



Past Recipients

2017: Contemporary Physics Education Project (Howard Matis)
2016: Robert John Beichner
2015: Edward F. Redish
2014: High School Modeling Instruction
2013: Gary Gladding
          Mats Selen
          Timothy Stelzer
2012: NOT AWARDED
2011: Physics Teaching Resource Agents
2010: Activity Based Physics Group
2009: Two Year College Workshop Team
2008: University of Washington Physics Education Group
2007: Physical Science Study Committee (PSSC) and Implementers