The Physics Education Research (PER) group at Montana State is committed to better understanding how students learn physics and astronomy.  Our research targets both STEM majors as well as non-STEM majors, because we believe that all students should have some working knowledge of science.  We are currently involved in several different projects, including:

  • An NSF funded project geared toward increasing the spatial reasoning skills of middle school students. National Science Foundation DRL: Designing a Middle Grades Spatial Skills Curriculum (abstract).
  • Developing heliophysics and space science related curricular materials for NASA. Resources are available at the AAPT website.
  • Increasing the oral communication skills of STEM graduate students. National Science Foundation NRT-IGE: Fostering Effective Oral Communication Skills for STEM Graduate Students (abstract).
  • Improving student beliefs regarding the learning of science.
  • A recent write up of our publication regarding perceptions of scientists.