2019 PhysTEC Conference Plenary Speakers

Wendy K. Adams, Colorado School of Mines

Adams, a native Coloradoan, is a Research Associate Professor of Physics at the Colorado School of Mines. A Physics Education Researcher by training, she earned her PhD. from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2007 under the guidance of Carl Wieman.  Adams research focuses on formative assessment and curriculum design. She is the author of the CLASS, which measures students' perceptions of physics and how to learn physics; has done extensive work on problem solving evaluation; developed the interface design guidelines for the PhET Interactive Simulations; and has recently developed the PTaP (Perceptions of Teaching as a Profession) instrument.  Adams also designed and developed the Explore Sound project - K-14 materials for acoustics; the Sparking Curiosity Physical Science curriculum for elementary pre-service teachers; and, a curriculum for physics for life science majors that produces a significant increase in interest in physics and strong learning gains without a gender gap. Currently Adams is the chair of the Committee for Teacher Preparation at Mines and was instrumental in the development of the Mines - University of Northern Colorado (UNC) partnership that offers a path towards math or science licensure for Mines students.

Stephanie V. Chasteen, Chasteen Consulting

Dr. Stephanie Chasteen has served as the external evaluator for the PhysTEC project since 2016. Dr. Chasteen is a physicist and education researcher, with her past work experience science journalism, working with teachers at the Exploratorium, and over a decade of work through the Science Education Initiative at the University of Colorado Boulder. While she maintains a small appointment at CU Boulder, most of her work is as a consultant through Chasteen Educational Consulting. Dr. Chasteen has served as external evaluator for over a dozen STEM improvement projects since 2009, including national-level projects in the physics community such as the New Faculty Workshop (AAPT/APS/AAS), the Joint Task Force for Undergraduate Physics Programs (JTUPP; APS/AAPT), and the Best Practices for Undergraduate Physics Programs (BPUPP; APS/AAPT). Her research focus is on faculty and departmental change.

Arthur Eisenkraft, University of Massachusetts Boston

Arthur Eisenkraft is the Distinguished Professor of Science Education, Professor of Physics and Director of the Center of Science and Math in Context (COSMIC) at the University of Massachusetts Boston.  He is past president of the National Science Teacher Association and is past-chair of the Science Academic Advisory Committee of the College Board. Eisenkraft served on the Working Group for the National Science Education Standards and on the Physical Science Design Team for the Framework for K-12 Science Education which led to the NGSS.  He is project director of the NSF-supported Active Physics and Active Chemistry introducing high quality project based science to all students.  He is chair and co-creator of the Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision Awards, involving 15,000 students annually. He leads the Wipro Science Education Fellowship program which is bringing sustainable change to over 35 school districts in MA, NJ, NY, CA, FL, MO and TX.  

His current research projects include investigating the efficacy of a second generation model of distance learning for professional development; a study of professional development choices that teachers make when facing a large scale curriculum change and assessing the technological literacy of K-12 students.

Eisenkraft has received numerous awards recognizing his teaching and related work including the National Science Board's Public Service Award, Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching, the American Association of Physics Teachers Millikan Medal, the Disney Corporation's Science Teacher of the Year, and the NSTA Robert Carleton Award.  He is a fellow of the AAAS and holds a patent for a laser vision testing system.

Zachary Levine, TEACH

Zachary is Executive Director of TEACH, a nonprofit founded by the U.S. Department of Education to rebrand teaching and cultivate the next generation of teachers. He is a recognized expert on teacher recruitment issues, in which he's been immersed for the past five years. For his work in this area, he has been awarded the Stanford Social Innovation Fellowship and an Entrepreneur Residency at NewSchools Venture Fund and presented at the White House and several national conferences. Prior to TEACH, Zachary led teacher  recruitment and hiring for the largest charter school organization in Los Angeles, Green Dot Public Schools. He has also worked in operations roles at Uncommon Schools in New York.

Before his career in education reform, Zachary served as a management consultant for the Boston Consulting Group, where he worked with Fortune 100 companies on a variety of strategy decisions, and as Director of Outreach for a California gubernatorial campaign. Zachary has earned his MBA, Masters in Education, and BA in Political Science from Stanford University.