AAPT.org - American Association of Physics Teachers

Outstanding Teaching Assistant

Awards and Recognition Programs

Recognition Program

The deadline for Outstanding Student, Learning Assistant, and Teaching Assistant Recognition is June 30.  Please contact us at membership@aapt.org for further information and to request the appropriate forms. Thank you for your support.

With the generous support of members and sponsors, the American Association of Physics Teachers is pleased to offer recognition programs for outstanding students from the high school level through graduate study.

The Recognition Program encourages and supports the study of physics as well as the importance of exceptional physics teaching. 

AAPT members who teach High School can nominate Outstanding High School Students for local recognition and a listing on the AAPT website.
Outstanding High School Student Awards - Nominations accepted April 1st through June 30th.

Department Chairs, who are current AAPT members, may nominate students for these awards. Please contact us at membership@aapt.org to receive  the Recognition Certificate, Recognition Student Letter, and Press Release for their Outstanding Teaching/Learning Assistants below.
Outstanding College/University Learning Assistant Awards - Nominations accepted April 1st through June 30th.
Outstanding College/University Teaching Assistant Awards - Nominations accepted April 1st through June 30th.
Outstanding Learning and Teaching Assistants are eligible to receive a one year gift AAPT membership. Learn more about the Learning Assistant Program at the University of Colorado website.

Awards          Search Table

The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) recognizes several types of accomplishment with awards, medals or citations, some of which are presented every year and a few of which are presented only occasionally. Nominations for any of these awards can be submitted to the AAPT Awards Committee by printing and submitting a form that is available from the link below. Nominations remain active for a period of five years from the date of submission. Self nomination is not appropriate for any award.

The AAPT Awards Committee invites nominations for the association's various awards:


Please complete the Awards Nomination Form and submit nominations by email to:
AAPT Awards Committee at awards@aapt.org.

Nomination requirements

Each nomination must include the following:

  1. A completed nomination form, which will include the award for which you are making a nomination; your name, address, phone number, and email address; the nominee's name, address, phone number, and email address; the names, addresses, and email addresses of two people who have first-hand knowledge of the achievements, work, and contributions of the nominee and who will write in support of this nomination (the nominator may be one of these two recommenders); and a brief list of the principal reasons why your nominee should receive this award. Note that the nomination form available at the above link can be filled in, saved, and then sent to the above email address as an attachment to an email.
  2. Two letters of recommendation supporting your nomination with at least one from a person who has been an AAPT member for at least the previous three years. Please solicit those letters from the recommenders you have identified. If you are one of the two people listed on the nomination form as a recommender, please draft your letter of support, elaborating on the principal reasons you listed briefly on the nomination form, and attach it to the same email that conveys the nomination form to AAPT. It is most convenient for AAPT if letters written by others can be attached to that email as well, so everything comes to AAPT in a single package. If that is not possible, then please instruct your recommenders to send their letters directly to AAPT as attachments to emails sent to the above email address.

If your nominee’s CV is readily available online without alerting your nominee to your nomination, please also include an electronic copy of that CV as an additional attachment to your email. This component is most important for the lecture awards and medals and less important (and probably less easily acquired) for the teaching awards and the distinguished service citations. In no case, however, should the nominee be asked directly for a CV. If your nominee is ultimately selected for an award, someone in the AAPT office will ask for the CV (and also a picture) after the Awards Committee has notified the nominee of his or her selection for an award.

There is no specific deadline for nominations and nominees remain under consideration for five years, with materials carried forward from one year's Awards Committee to the next. After five years, nominees are not given further consideration unless they are renominated.

The Awards Committee strongly encourages nominations with supporting documentation but discourages excessive or redundant material. As befits an international society, association-wide significance or national impact is a major consideration. Sections are encouraged to present awards of regional or local character. Final decisions for awards are typically made during the National Meeting immediately preceding the one at which the award is to be presented.