The 5+ Club

Solving the U.S. Physics Teacher Shortage

School districts in the United States consistently rank physics as the highest teacher shortage area among all academic disciplines. Although the number of high school students taking physics has more than doubled over the past two decades, less than half of public school physics courses are taught by an instructor with a degree in the subject.

The PhysTEC 5+ Club bridges the gap by reinforcing the efforts of colleges and universities to graduate more physics educators. Since 2012, The 5+ Club has recognized dozens of postsecondary institutions for graduating five or more physics teachers in a given year, a figure that puts them in the 99th percentile of all institutions.

The 2017-2018 5+ Club awardees:

  • Brigham Young University (21)
  • Rutgers The State University of New Jersey (8)
  • Virginia Tech (8)
  • University of Kentucky (6)
  • The College of New Jersey (5)

The 5+ Club application is now closed. Please check back in the fall.

Applying institutions must be PhysTEC members. Membership is open to all postsecondary schools with a passion for graduating qualified physics educators. Not yet a member? Get started here.

For every complete application, PhysTEC will:

  • Send a letter of commendation cosigned by American Physical Society (APS) and American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) presidents to the university president and relevant administrators
  • Present a certificate of acknowledgment during the opening plenary session at the PhysTEC Conference
  • Congratulate new members of the 5+ Club in APS News and the AAPT e-NNOUNCER
  • Post an announcement on and
  • Include the institution in the 5+ Club online directory, and provide a web badge for the program website
  • Provide a draft press release

Thank you for doing your part to address the national shortage of physics teachers. With questions, please contact the PhysTEC Coordinator at