Background on Working Group Reports from the Foundations and Frontiers in Physics Education Research

Karen Cummings

lakeThe Foundations and Frontiers in Physics Education Research Conference was held for the second time August 6–10, 2007, in Bar Harbor, Maine on the beautiful campus of the College of the Atlantic. The conference is a week-long residential meeting intended to foster direct and in-depth discussion among specialists in the field of Physics Education Research. Speakers at the conference examine the current state of the field and explore potentially fruitful new directions. Plenary lectures were given by Lei Bao (The Ohio State University), Andy Elby (University of Maryland), Paula Heron and Peter Shaffer (University of Washington), Christian Kautz (Hamburg University of Technology, Germany), Cedric Linder (Uppsala University, Sweden), Miriam Reiner (Israel Institute of Technology) and Michael Wittmann (University of Maine). The conference was organized by Michael Wittmann, Rachel Scherr (University of Maryland) and Paula Heron.

boatEvening sessions at this conference included meetings of topical groups interested in specific research issues, a contributed poster session and meetings of several working groups. These working groups discuss important issues of community-wide interest. Their reports have been transformed into the four articles which follow.

A grant from the APS Forum on Education allowed graduate students to attend at a greatly reduced registration cost. The third Foundations and Frontiers in Physics Education Research conference will be held during the summer of 2009. More information regarding past and future Foundations and Frontiers in Physics Education Research conferences can be found at

Group Photo of the Second Foundations and Frontiers in Physics Education Research Conference

Group Photo

Seated: Miriam Reiner, Andy Elby, Chris Kautz, Lei Bao, Cedric Linder, Peter Shaffer, Paula Heron, Michael Wittmann
Standing, left to right: Jing Wang, Ellie Sayre, Jerry Feldman, Laura Buteler, Tanya Antimirova, Bhupi Nagpure, Carol Koleci, Georgia Bracey, Cornelius Bennhold, Brant Hinrichs, Genaro Zavala, Sahana Murthy, Dewey Dykstra, Steve Kanim, Dodie Albers, Andrew Boudreaux, Padraic Springuel, Mila Kryjevskaia, Brian Frank, Jennifer Blue, Mike Loverude, Mac Stetzer, Rebecca Lindell, Yuhfen Lin, David Meltzer, Joe Redish, Warren Christensen, John Thompson, David Brookes, Ian Beatty, Sam McKagan, Leslie Atkins, Bill Reay, Lillian McDermott, Andrew Heckler, Katrina Black (and Ben), Brian Pyper, Enrique Coleoni, Tom Bing, Renee Michell Goertzen, Brad Ambrose, Don Mountcastle, Ayush Gupta, Brandon Bucy, Sebastien Cormier, Homeyra Sadaghiani

Karen Cummings is Associate Professor of Physics at Southern Connecticut State University and (retiring) Editor of the Spring APS Forum on Education Newsletter.