Thriving Programs Study 

The PhysTEC project conducted a study of “thriving” physics teacher education programs (defined as programs that frequently graduate five or more physics teachers per year). The goal of the study was to identify common practices and structures of these highly successful programs so that these approaches may be emulated by other physics teacher education programs.

A new instrument, the Physics Teacher Education Program Analysis (PTEPA) Rubric, was developed to characterize the practices and structures observed at thriving programs, providing a guide for program leaders to reflect upon and improve their programs, and enable measurement and research over time.

This page contains the PTEPA Rubric and other supporting materials.

Webinar on the PTEPA Rubric

The PhysTEC program hosted a webinar to support physics departments in improving their teacher education programs by completing the new PTEPA Rubric. During the one-hour webinar, the lead study author Stephanie Chasteen will introduce the Rubric, lead participants through one section of it, and answer your questions.

You can watch the webinar here or download the slides.

PTEPA Rubric

Supporting Materials

Institutions Studied for the Thriving Programs Study


  • Stephanie V. Chasteen – Chasteen Educational Consulting
  • Rachel E. Scherr – Scherr & Associates
  • Monica Plisch – American Physical Society 

Cover of Thriving's Report
Download the Full Study

Report Citation

Stephanie V. Chasteen, Rachel E. Scherr and Monica Plisch, A study of thriving physics teacher education programs: Development of the Physics Teacher Education Program Analysis (PTEPA) Rubric. (American Physical Society, College Park, MD, 2018).