Executive Board Minutes - July 2001July 21, 22 and 26, 2001
Board Members Present:
John Hubisz, President; Ruth Howes, Past-President; Chris Chiaverina, President-Elect; Charles Holbrow, Vice-President; Mary Beth Monroe, Secretary; Alex Dickison, Treasurer; Steve Iona, Chair of Section Reps; Frank Peterson, Vice-Chair of Section Reps; Mary Fehrs, At-Large Member; Lila Adair, At-Large Member; Carolyn Haas, At-Large Member; Karl Mamola, Editor of The Physics Teacher; Jan Tobochnik, Editor of the American Journal of Physics; Bernie Khoury, Executive Officer.
Guests: Warren Hein, Dick Reimann, Valerie Evans, Carol Heimpel, Maria Elena Khoury, Matthew Potts, Leonard Jossem, Sina Kniseley, Richard Peterson, Herb and Claire Gottlieb, Jack Hehn, Jim Nelson, Larry Badar, John Layman, and Tom O’Kuma
After welcoming Board members and guests, President John Hubisz called the meeting to order at 7:02 PM in the Wilmorite Board Room, Hyatt Regency, Rochester.
2. Additions to the Agenda.
Steve Iona noted that the Report from the Chair of Section Representatives had been omitted in the distributed agenda. Board members also requested the addition of the following items for discussion and possible action:
Consideration of the letter from Lillian McDermott
Report from Dick Reiman concerning the Summer 2002 Meeting
Invitation from Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas
Status of the Professional Concerns Area Committee
Center for Teaching Resources
Representation by the Society of Physics Students on the Programs Committee
Report on expenses to members attending national AAPT meetings
Committee assignments for Vice-Chair of Section Reps
3. Approval of Minutes.
Ruth Howes made the motion to approve the Minutes of the April 2001 Board Meeting with no corrections. Carolyn Haas seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
4. Officers’ Reports:
The President reported that the appointment of members to the Temporary Area Committee on Teacher Preparation and the 2002 Nominating Committee had been completed. Members of the Teacher Prep committee are:
Len Jossem, Chair, Ohio State University
Paul Hickman, Northeastern University
Fred Goldberg, San Diego State University
Dewey Dykstra, Boise State University
Pat Heller, University of Minnesota
Paula Heron, University of Washington
John Layman, University of Maryland
Ingrid Novodvorsky, University of Arizona
Jack Hehn, American Institute of Physics
Carolyn Haas asked why a two-year college teacher had not been appointed to the temporary committee. Hubisz explained that other faculty could certainly participate in committee activities as “Friends to the Committee”, but these listed faculty were appointed as members to the committee for specific reasons.
Members of the 2002 Nominating Committee are:
Peter Hopkinson, Vancouver Community College
Karen Bouffard, Chair, Newton Rules, Inc.
Sandra Harpole, Mississippi State University
Sam Sampere, Syracuse University
Rosaline Secrest, Terre Haute South Vigo High School
Joe Meyer has agreed to serve as the Teller for the 2001 AAPT Elections to be held in the Fall.
Hubisz reported that the Task Force on Standards is beginning to realize activity among the members of the newly appointed committee. He also added that the Report on Middle School Texts continues to generate inquiries and that the editors for Physics Today have expressed an interest in writing an article on this report.
The President-Elect reported the pre registration count for the Rochester Meeting was about 950 and he estimated that total registration would reach about 1100. Forty-two workshops have been scheduled for the meeting. Special features of the meeting included the thematic nature of the meeting (presentations by all plenary speakers will address topics concerning light and optics), the Arnold Arons Memorial Session, the First Timer’s reception organized by Trish Allen, the reception for the new editor of AJP, the email café available during exhibit hours and the daily poster sessions. Chiaverina also reported that approximately 350 participants had registered for the Summer Gala event and that free bus transportation would be provided. The Marsh White Memorial Session was rescheduled for the 2002 Winter Meeting in Philadelphia. The Program Chair expressed his thanks to Carol Heimpel and Charles Holbrow for their help in the planning and organizing of the Summer Meeting.
Charles Holbrow reported the status of the program for the AAPT Winter Meeting in Philadelphia. He had received confirmation for the three plenary speakers and a special presentation on Ben Franklin was planned for the annual meeting. Under the supervision of Barry Feierman, the meeting will have one, maybe two, sessions on “Physics First”. The Vice-President noted that he had made special efforts to involve the faculty from the four-year colleges and universities in the Philadelphia area.
Holbrow suggested that the development of special sessions addressing a theme was a feasible option for the Summer 2002 meeting in Boise. Following an introduction by Holbrow, Dick Reimann from the Department of Physics at Boise State University reported on special preparations underway in expectation of the 2002 Summer Meeting. He specifically noted that all campus dorms (housing 600 beds) now have air conditioning and the new physics lecture building will be the site for the AAPT workshops
Ruth Howes thanked all Board members for their assistance in procuring nominations for AAPT awards and asked the members to be especially alert for future nominees for the Klopsteg and Richtmyer awards. She expressed the need to identify strong speakers with a talent for communicating physics to a general audience.
Mary Beth Monroe reported that in the email inquiry generated by Alex Dickison prior to the Summer Meeting, Board members generally felt that AAPT should not assume the costs for refreshments to be served during the Arons’ Memorial Session. (Carol Heimpel reported that Wiley publishers had assumed full responsibility for these expenses.)
The Secretary further reported that letters of appointments had been mailed to the members of the Committee on Teacher Preparation and the 2002 Nominating Committee. The names of these newly appointed members will be posted on the 2001 Organizational Directory at the AAPT website. She added that in the Charge to the Nominating Committee she advised the members in their initial discussions to contemplate the role of the AAPT in the science community, particularly paying attention to the Mission and Critical Issues for Strategic Planning adopted by the Board in October 2000. Monroe also reported that the names of Anthony French and Mario Iona had been accidentally omitted from the SI Metric Committee listing in the 2001 Organizational Directory.
Monroe also expressed her intention to work with past Secretaries on the revision of the AAPT Officers’ Handbook. She anticipated initial discussions with Dick Peterson and John Layman to occur during the Rochester meeting.
The Treasurer referred Board members to the memo from Bernie Khoury (Agenda Item Ie5) concerning two additional expenditures in the FY 2001 budget approved by the Board in its April 2001 meeting. Khoury noted that, as the Klopsteg Fund funds both budget additions, the expenditures will minimally impact the FY 2001 budget and will not affect the net operating revenue.
In his review of the Statement of Activities for the last six months, Dickison reported that support and revenue funds were larger than expenses. He specifically addressed three items reported in the budget. (1) The revenue and expenses for meetings and workshops were essentially balanced. (2) The AJP budget item does not accurately reflect expenses since Amherst was late in submitting its bills; and (3) Investment income is down by $250 000 but $130 000 came in from Exxon Mobil Corporation
The Treasurer’s Current Investment Schedule reported a loss of about $190,000. However Dickison reminded the Executive Board that it will take the AAPT a few years to realize a gain from its long term investment of $3 000 000. The goal of the long-term investment is to acquire a reserve in an amount equal to the annual expenses of the association. Holbrow cautioned the Board that the association needs to make sure that its investments will continue to allow sufficient cash flow needed by the Executive Office.
The Executive Officer referred the Board members to his July 2001 Report included in the Board Packet. Items highlighted by Khoury for information and/or discussion are listed below.
The bonds to construct the American Center for Physics building were refinanced in June 2001, in accordance with the bond resolution accepted by the Executive Board during its April meeting. This action was done without extending the term of the bonds and will save the AAPT approximately $1000 a month in rental payments
Khoury reported the status on two staff positions. Frances Smith had been hired as the new Director of Finance, replacing Frank Curtis. Ann Johnson, Executive Assistant, left AAPT in early June for personal reasons. Carol Heimpel has assumed some of the assistant’s responsibilities while AAPT searches for a new replacement.
This year’s International Physics Olympiad took five medals, three gold and two silver. Khoury noted that in the first years of competition the U.S. teams performed poorly in the lab portion of the contest but performed well on other parts. Due to the training of the students at the University of Maryland specifically targeting laboratory instruction, the U.S. team has improved substantially and is performing equally well on all portions in the international competition.
Some discussion followed concerning the safety of our competing students in next year’s competition scheduled for Jakarta, Indonesia. Jakarta has reported domestic turmoil in recent months and it is not clear what the political situation will be next year. Even though Khoury has received correspondence from officials in Indonesia assuring him that there is no danger to the Olympiad teams, he will continue to monitor the situation during the next year. Sites for the international competition are defined as to year and location by a standing list prepared by the officials of the Olympiad.
Khoury advised the Board that the AAPT needs to begin now to consider two appointments for the U.S. Liaison Committee to the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP). These appointments will replace Len Jossem and Joe Redish whose terms on the committee will end next year.
A meeting of the 2003 InterAmerican Council has tentatively been set for Cuba.
Renewal notices will shortly go out to members online.
AAPT has received a letter from a faculty member at Providence College asking the association to look at the accreditation process for schools. Khoury announced that he would be giving a related paper during the Rochester meeting.
Khoury has been in conversations with the American Astronomical Society concerning a proposed joint meeting for 2007. He will bring recommendations to the Board concerning this matter in January.
Khoury and Hubisz attended the NASA Conference on Education. Khoury described the meeting of science educators as basically a “show and tell”.
Khoury highlighted from his May Update to the Board two activities of the APS Committee on Education. The committee is considering a proposal to establish a prize in education and is also discussing the licensing and certification of teachers with regard to the inclusion of the views of physicists in any state-based efforts.
5. Assessing Member Needs.
During the April 2001 Meeting, the Executive Board authorized an expenditure of $7400 to develop a survey to assess member needs. A draft of the survey was included in the Board packet mailed to members earlier in the week. The survey will be conducted and analyzed by the Statistical Research Center at AIP. The Center’s report will be provided to the Board during its fall meeting.
No action was taken.
6. Physics for All.
Khoury reported that he had participated in some small meetings addressing a movement by some high schools within our country to offer physics during the freshman year. Leon Lederman is the primary leader in this initiative, using his own resources with some support from Fermi Lab. He has enlisted the help from individuals and has compiled a list of 200 high schools that are offering physics during the first year. Lederman is also considering using Foundation funding for establishing inverted curriculum in more schools.
Discussion then followed among the Board members concerning their personal experiences with physics first in their local school systems. The general sentiment expressed by the Board members was that the association needs to find ways to clarify to the general community that while it promotes the” physics for all” initiative, it does not necessarily advocate the “physics first” effort.
No action was taken.
7. PERS Dissemination.
Though the PERS dissemination was an agenda item for both the AAPT Publications Committee and the Area Committee on Research in Physics Education, Khoury advised the Board members that it would be premature to take action on this item before January 2002. The Board has informally agreed to support an additional issue of the AJP supplement in 2002.
General discussion then following concerning the best avenue for publishing PER articles beyond the proposed 2002 supplement. Tobochnik commented that the bottom line to consider is the appeal of the PER articles to the majority of the AJP readers. While some of the submitted articles from the PER community are of interest to members within their community, they are not of interest to the larger AAPT community. F. Peterson expressed concern that the authors of some of the articles accepted for publication in the PER Supplement may not get published. S. Kniseley, AAPT Director of Communications, informed the Executive Board that during a visit to her office, Joe Redish as Editor of the PER Supplement expressed a desire for a little give and take by the AAPT as viable options are identified and as he explores what the members and readers want.
No action was taken.
8. Task Force on Standards.
Hubisz described the Task Force as active and healthy but reported that the members had no action to be brought before the Board at this time.
9. Statement from Committee on Research in Physics Education.
Khoury brought to the attention of the Board a Resolution from the Committee on Research in Physics Education included in the Board packet. (See Agenda Item IIID) During the San Diego meeting, Hubisz had asked area committees to discuss within their meetings the desirability of AAPT hosting only one national meeting a year rather than the current practice of hosting two meetings. The PER Committee strongly objected to the one meeting a year proposition and stated that “reducing the annual meetings to only one per year would seriously endanger the growth of PER as a field, and would moreover substantially damage the highly productive interchange of information and opinions between physics education researchers and the broader community of physics educators.”
10. Conference Calls among Officers.
In providing some background for this discussion item, the Executive Officer explained that the elected officers of the Board biweekly participate in conference phone calls via a 1-800 number. The conference phone calls began a few years ago and initially only involved the EO and the members of the presidential chain. Recently the phone calls have evolved to include the Secretary and Treasurer. As the phone calls involve approximately half of the Board members, the officers had expressed the concern that some board members could feel excluded from discussions and participation. Therefore, C. Holbrow asked that this concern be brought to the Board for general discussion.
In the subsequent discussion, Howes explained that the phone calls primarily allowed for a discussion of the nuts and bolts of conducting the business of their elected positions. The conversations did not address associational policy. C. Haas said that she and L. Adair had originally felt excluded when they learned of the conference calls, but that the regular Update Reports from the Executive Officer eased the feeling of being left out. (Hubisz commented that this statement spoke to the importance of having regular reports from the EO.) The Board members did not pose any objections to this activity and there was general consent that any Board member could participate in the phone conference and should feel free to do so.
11. Issues Surrounding Physics First Session in Philadelphia.
C. Holbrow, Program Chair for the AAPT Meeting in Philadelphia, reported that Barry Feierman had done a superb job in organizing sessions to address issues related to the teaching of physics in the ninth grade (“physics first”). Holbrow explained that the sessions have been structured as a forum for the discussion of the inverted curriculum with presentations presenting both the pros and cons encountered by the schools and teachers. F. Peterson strongly recommended that the AAPT publicly clarify that while the association promotes and encourages physics for all, it is not advocating physics first.
12. Active Physics and Physics First Advocacy.
Active Physics is a physics text targeting students who would not otherwise study physics in high school and it was developed by the AAPT with funding from the NSF. According to the financial agreement between the publishers and AAPT, the association receives almost 3% of the cost of the book in royalties.
In recent action taken by the school districts in the San Diego, CA area, all ninth graders will be required to take physics, beginning in the 2001 academic year and the selected text for the inverted curriculum is Active Physics. Other informal reports indicate that many more schools have adopted the inverted curriculum model. “Physics First” is just one element of the broader issue “physics for all” which the AAPT has chosen as one of its critical issues. Therefore Khoury asked the Board members to discuss how the association “can deal with allegations of conflict of interest from individuals who challenge the AAPT’s advocacy of ‘physics for all’ and the association’s financial stake in one of the curricula designed to accomplish such a goal.” (See Agenda Item III J)
One main focus in the subsequent discussion by the Board member concerned the appropriateness of Active Physics as a text for the San Diego school system. Khoury explained that the AAPT product was not designed to serve a foundational course-preparing students who later take chemistry and biology nor was the text designed to serve a senior level physics course. In that regard, some Board members expressed the concern that the text publishers who were organizing the workshops for the San Diego teachers might misrepresent the intent of the authors.
With respect to the dual roles facing the AAPT, the Board generally felt that the statements prepared by B. Khoury (Item III J in the Board Packet) were well stated. In addition the Board recommended that the Executive Officer write an editorial or a general statement explaining that Active Physics is just one set of curricular options available to teachers of ninth grade physics and that the support of the association to schools in the preparation of their ninth grade science teachers should not be viewed as an argument for inverted curriculum nor should the service be viewed as a marketing strategy promoting the use of the AAPT product.
13. Publication of Abstracts for Philadelphia Meeting.
Holbrow introduced for discussion the feasibility of printing the paper abstracts for the Philadelphia meeting in a different format. If the abstracts were printed online and not in the Announcer, as is the usual custom, the deadline for submitting abstracts could be delayed three or four weeks. AAPT would also realize a savings in production if the abstracts were not printed in hard copy and mailed. On the other hand, this change could possibly result in a loss of the archival feature of the printed abstracts.
Khoury reported that the Executive Board had discussed this option about two years earlier. At that time, the Board members were divided on the issue and some negative reaction to the proposed change was very strong. S. Iona reported that the Section Representatives had also voiced strong objections in the past.
The Executive Board members appeared to be hesitant to move forward on this suggestion at this time. Some Board members expressed support of a proposed compromise based on the model of APS: to mail printed abstracts only to pre registered members. Len Jossem suggested that it might be wise to consider how many abstracts are only published in the Announcer. For some members, the AAPT publication could be the sole publication record for abstracts and if so, this practice could be a lever that some faculty use to attend the national meetings.
During the third session of the Executive Board, some Board members reported that they had posed this question to area committees they visited during the Rochester meeting. The committee members polled generally did not favor such an action by the AAPT. Steve Iona also reported that the Section Representatives strongly opposed the disassociation of the abstracts from the Announcer (See Minutes Item 26).
Hubisz recessed the Executive Board at 9:55 PM. Each Board member signed the Certificate of Appreciation to Robert Romer for his contributions to AAPT as Editor of the American Journal of Physics. Executive Board II was convened at 12:45 on January 22, 2001.
14. Report on the “Conference on the Role of Research in the Natural Sciences at Undergraduate Institutions.
During the January 2001 Meeting, the AAPT Executive Board appointed Dick Peterson as the AAPT representative to the undergraduate conference held at Fermi Lab, June 24-26. The conference was organized by the Research Corporation in conjunction with other private funding foundations, including the Dreyfus Foundation, the Robert A. Welch Foundation, the W.M. Keck Foundation and the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust. Peterson reported that the conference coincided with the completion of a major study addressing the current status of undergraduate natural science research within 136 institutions (104 private and 32 public). He noted four possible conference implications for the AAPT and its membership in undergraduate institutions:
While the total external funding support for UG research has steadily increased during the last 15 years, the foundations are not seeing as many proposals as they would like. The number of proposals has remained fairly constant.
Since AAPT membership has likely decreased in these institutions during the last 15 years, the AAPT’s increasing identity with the Society of Physics Students and student papers may be a strong and positive statement regarding the association’s support and recognition of UG research.
The major study listed the top 150 predominantly UG institutions graduating physics majors from 1985-1997 in its publication: Academic Excellence: The Sourcebook. Consequently, the AAPT liaisons could serve crucial roles in these colleges that typically produce 10-15 graduates a year.
The study did not address any changes in the UG science curricula or the changing academic needs of its graduates.
In summary, D. Peterson expressed his perception that “the conference was not prepared or oriented to properly address many of the issues being considered by efforts within the physics community toward undergraduate physics reform.”
Tobochnik reported that he had also attended the meeting and commented that the whole conference was essentially about research with very little attention given to the other issues of concern within the larger physics community. He will prepare a report of this conference for a forthcoming AJP editorial.
No action was taken at this time.
15. Task Force on Physics Content.
D. Peterson reported that he would convene a group meeting of the members of the Task Force while in Rochester to initiate discussions concerning the Charge to the Task Force. He added that he anticipates that the Task Force will be prepared to present ideas for action to the Executive Board in October or January.
No action was taken.
16. Support for Schools Moving to Physics First.
Marge Bardeen and Leon Lederman of Fermi Lab have informally reported that they have identified about 200 schools, private and public, with physics offered at the ninth grade level. In addition, the school district in San Diego, CA has recently required that all ninth-graders take physics. Anticipating the need for AAPT to assist these schools in preparing their ninth grade teachers to meet this challenge, the Executive Officer prepared a set of statements offering “Support for Schools Moving to ‘Physics First’ “ (Board Packet Agenda Item III K).
Khoury proposed that while the PTRA summer institute and one-day workshops would be a good starting place, the AAPT should develop a separate set of workshops to prepare the future teachers of the ninth grade physics courses. The content of the workshops would need to address the training in physics concepts for those teachers who are currently biology or chemistry teachers as well as retooling the current physics teachers in the use of the ninth grade texts.
Following a lengthy discussion of this topic, C. Holbrow moved that the Executive Board develop a planning grant which would provide a way for faculty experienced in teaching ninth grade physics to meet and interact with faculty who will be implementing the new curriculum. Ruth Howes seconded the motion. C. Chiaverina, C. Holbrow, and B. Khoury volunteered to prepare the draft of the grant for the Board’s consideration in January. The motion passed unanimously. Further discussion of this topic and action will occur during the October Board meeting.
17. AAPT Services to Four Year Colleges.
Holbrow reported that he has received many communications from colleagues in which they express the view that the AAPT services are not relevant to four-year colleges. In addition, his review of the program for Rochester revealed that 305 papers address physics pedagogy while only 22 papers address physics content. Therefore, in planning for the Winter Meeting in Philadelphia he has tried to incorporate more content into the program. However, he indicated that more progress should be realized toward involving more four-year colleges in AAPT activities.
Fehrs expressed that, based on her experience with the regional meetings of the Pacific Northwest Association for College Physics, the idea of themes for AAPT meetings is a strong attraction for faculty. Holbrow suggested that this might be facilitated by having more plenary speakers. However, Kniseley pointed out that addition of activities or sessions to a meeting program could only be accomplished if some activities were eliminated. Howes then suggested that a way to accomplish the theme aspect would be to pick a topic and then clump workshops/tutorials on Sunday followed by a couple of related plenary speakers on the following day.
D. Peterson and Fehrs also suggested that more activities should be establishing targeting students and student presentations. Along these lines, AAPT could designate an SPS representative as a member of the Programs Committee. The Board consented to continue this discussion.
18. Report on PhysTEC.
John Layman congratulated AAPT on its swiftness to create an Area Committee on Teacher Preparation in response to the request made to the Executive Board during its San Diego meeting. He explained that this committee will facilitate the activities of PhysTEC (Physics Teacher Education Coalition), a joint effort of APS, AAPT and AIP. PhysTEC proposes to persuade college physics departments to assume a responsibility for teacher preparation. Layman reported that six institutions with strong collaborations with colleges of education and local schools have been identified and they have accepted the invitation to serve as the Primary Program Institutions. They are Ball State University, Oregon State University, University of Arizona, University of Arkansas, Western Michigan University, and Xavier University of Louisiana.
Currently the project is awaiting official word of funding from the National Science Foundation as a five year award in the amount of $6.2 million and from FIPSE as a three year award in the amount $500, 000. Though the award will be made to APS, Layman emphasized that the AAPT should take the lead in the implementation and maintenance of the initiative. Principal Investigators for this project are Jack Hehn, AIP, Fred Stein, APS and John Layman, AAPT (by Board appointment), and Warren Hein, AAPT.
An initial planning meeting of all PIs and advisors is planned for Sept 28. In addition, the PIs are actively looking for a project coordinator to monitor and supervise the day-to-day tasks. Jack Hehn specifically asked the help of the Board members in identifying this individual. He explained that the coordinator will live in the College Park area and must be prepared to commit 3-5 years for this job.
19. Venture Fund Committee Report.
Dickison reported that the Committee had met and reviewed reports on each of six projects. He also reported that the Karplus Book, compiled by Bob Fuller, was ready and should be available during the Rochester meeting.
On behalf of the Venture Committee, Dickison moved that the Video Project by Ted Ducas be canceled. The project has gone beyond awarded time with no activity reported. The motion passed unanimously.
20. National Task Force on Undergraduate Physics.
The Task Force has established four venues of activities, each addressing a sub community of the larger undergraduate physics community.
The first, known as SPIN UP (Strategic Programs for Innovations in Undergraduate Physics), targets the 762 bachelor granting institutions. (Refer to the Executive Board Minutes, April 2001, Item 17) Khoury reported that AAPT has received a grant of $133,000 from ExxonMobil Foundation to support these SPIN UP activities.
Warren Hein reminded the Board that the Foundation requires each sponsoring organization to contribute $5 000 each year to the project. Holbrow moved that AAPT contribute $5 000 from the Klopsteg Fund to the SPIN UP project. Iona seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
A second initiative of the Task Force proposes the development of a conference for introductory, calculus-based, physics courses scheduled for April 2002 in Crystal City, VA.. An alpha text of the proposal prepared by Ramon Lopez and Bob Beichner was included in the Board packet (Agenda Item IIIA). The final version of the proposal will be prepared for submission to NSF and Board members were advised that they should anticipate an e-motion on this action within the next month. The conference is anticipated to have an attendance of 200.
A third initiative targets the two-year college community. Howes reported that she, Tom O’Kuma and Mary Beth Monroe were developing a proposal which would seek external funding for a two-year college effort to parallel the SPIN UP project. She explained that O’Kuma would present a more comprehensive report on this effort during the Board meeting on Thursday. (Refer to Minutes Item 25.)
Howes explained that the fourth initiative of NTFUP sought to involve the chairs of physics departments from the leading twenty-five RI universities in the revitalization effort. A small initial meeting is tentatively planned for the Fall, 2001.
21. Report from PTRA.
Jim Nelson and Larry Badar reported that the PTRA program had a very successful week of activities at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), including 26 one-hour workshops and 8 three-hour workshops. The project directors were complimentary of the staff, faculty and facilities at RIT.
Badar and Nelson stated the new PTRA proposal would be submitted to the AAPT office by August 15, allowing adequate time for Executive Board review and authorization by electronic motion. The grant will seek funding for both rural and urban initiatives from the National Science Foundation. Badar explained that monies from the Campaign for Physics had enabled PTRA to implement the rural initiative during the summer.
Khoury asked the PTRA project directors if local PTRA teachers could provide some training for ninth-grade physics teachers in the San Diego area. Nelson reacted favorably to the suggestion and expressed the view that he thought the school district would pay for the teacher training.
22. Knowles Science Teaching Foundation.
Herb Gottlieb announced that the Knowles Science Teaching Foundation will replace Metrologic as cosponsor with AAPT of the PhysBowl Competition. Metrologic will no longer be an exhibitor at AAPT meetings.
23. Executive Session I.
The President called the Board into Executive Session I (with the Executive Officer) at 4:24 PM.
At the conclusion of the Executive Session, the Board recessed until Thursday morning. Hubisz reconvened the Executive Board at 8:02 AM on July 26.
24. Conference Fees for PER participants.
Dick Reimann inquired as to Board policy regarding registration fees to be paid by faculty attending the PER 2002 conference. B. Khoury explained that registrants to the PER Conference are required to pay two registration fees, one for the AAPT meeting and one for the PER conference, adding that the members of the PER community feel they are also part of the AAPT community and most of the PER faculty also attend the AAPT meeting.
25. New Two-Year College Initiative.
Tom O’Kuma reported that he and Mary Beth Monroe, in conversations with Howes, Jack Hehn and Bernie Khoury, were preparing a proposal to be submitted as a “special project’ to the Division of Undergraduate Education, NSF by October 1, 2001. The grant will seek funding in the amount of approximately $200,000 to fund a NTFUP initiative targeting two-year colleges (TYCs). Building on the leadership identified during the TYC21 project, the activities of the TYC initiative will attempt to identify the “departmental unit” at the community college level responsible for implementing academic change. The TYC project will comprise two main elements: (1) ten site visits to TYC campuses; and (2) a program survey of the remaining two-year colleges.
Howes added that there are three benefits for the physics community to be derived from this initiative. First, the undergraduate physics education community has done a poor job of attracting and retaining women and minority. The large percentage of underrepresented students enrolled in two-year colleges makes it imperative that the Task Force involve these colleges in physics reform. Second, a lot is known about how to implement change at the four-year college. However, very little is known concerning community colleges. Third, a strong need exists to educate the four- year college community about the two-year college in general and vice versa.
One question posed by the Board asked how the new NTFUP initiative would provide for conversations between change makers at the four -year college and the change makers at the two- year college. O’Kuma predicted that such conversations would occur among the members of the visiting teams, during the site visits to institutions and at national and regional physics meetings. In response to a question from Holbrow, O’Kuma commented that TYC faculty have very little problems implementing change within their programs of study unless money and/or additional facilities are needed.
Following a request from O’Kuma, R. Howes moved that the Board accept the proposal in principle and C. Holbrow seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. Khoury noted that Board members should expect an electronic motion concerning the submission of the finalized proposal, with a copy of the complete proposal attached, in mid September.
26. Report from Section Representatives.
S. Iona reported two items from the Section Representatives. (1) In an informal poll of the section reps concerning the separation of the paper abstracts from the Announcer, the vote was almost unanimous NOT to support this action. (2) The section reps expressed the desire that the Vice Chair of Section Reps assume office at the end of the January meeting in which the election took place. This action therefore would coincide with the beginning of the terms of office for other elected members of the Board.
27. Report from the Publications Committee.
As Chair of the AAPT Publications Committee, Monroe presented the following action items to the Board.
Monroe moved the reappointment of Courtney Willis as Editor of AAPT Examinations. Willis’ term ends in July 2001. The motion passed unanimously.
Monroe moved the reappointment of Roger Stuewer as Editor of AAPT Resource Letters. Stuewer’s current term will end January 2002. The motion passed unanimously.
Monroe moved the appointment of Anthony French (MIT) and O. Laurence Weaver (Kansas State) to the Editorial Board of AAPT Resource Letters, replacing Russ Hobbie and Barbara Levi whose terms will end in January. The motion passed unanimously.
Monroe moved the appointment of Jo Ann Merrill, Charles Emmert and William (Bill) Ingham to the Editorial Board of AAPT Exams, replacing John Ball, Beverly Cannon and Jan Mader whose terms end this year. The motion passed unanimously.
Monroe moved the publication by AAPT of the Revised Two-Year College Guidelines with minor revisions. The recommended format for publication was hard copy and electronic copy on the AAPT website. Monroe reported that the revision of the guidelines had occurred over the last year and a half and Bill Hogan, editor, had worked very hard to involve all the active TYC members of AAPT. The CPTYC had approved the revisions with a vote of 7-0. The motion passed unanimously.
The next item presented for discussion and action concerned the publication of a reprint book by Rossing and Chiaverina on Teaching Color and Light. The AAPT Resource Letters Editorial Board had reviewed the document and recommended its publication. However many of the members of the Editorial Board pointed out that the AAPT had passed a policy that it would not publish reprint books. The action had been taken simply for financial reasons. In this particular situation, the authors had made the offer to subsidize the publication of the document. The Editorial Board members were therefore concerned that if the document were printed with this guarantee, it would raise an issue of fairness.
After discussion of the proposed publication and its implications, the Publications Committee recommended the publication of the reprint book pending the development by the Board of a new policy on the publication of reprint books with a provision for exceptions.
Upon instruction from the Pubs Committee, Roger Stuewer, Editor, AAPT Resource Letters and Bernard Khoury, AAPT Executive Officer, drafted a resolution for the Board’s consideration. The Publications Committee moved the approval of the following resolution:
“In 1999 the AAPT Executive Board for financial reasons suspended publication of Reprint Books to accompany Resource Letters. This policy will continue, but exceptions will be considered in specific cases provided: (1) the Resource Letter Editorial Board judges a particular Reprint Book to be intellectually meritorious and of wide appeal, and recommends its publication to the AAPT Publications Committee; (2) the Editor of the Reprint Book (that is, the author of the Resource Letter) provides or secures a sufficient amount of external funding to permit its publication at no net cost to AAPT; and (3) the AAPT Publications Committee supports this recommendation to the AAPT Executive Board.”
The motion passed with 10 yes and 1 abstention.
Monroe moved that AAPT publish the Rossing/Chiaverina Reprint Book on Teaching Color and Light. The submitted document met all three provisions of the newly passed reprint book policy. The motion passed with 10 yes.
(Due to a conflict of interest C. Chiaverina abstained from voting on the first motion and subsequently left the room during the discussion and vote of the second motion.)
28. Status on other AAPT products.
J Hubisz reported that the Committee on Women in Physics was seeking funding to update and upgrade the videotapes used in the student confidence workshops. In a subsequent straw vote among its members, the Board voiced a general agreement to receive and consider a proposal from the Committee in October.
29. Report from Membership and Benefits Committee.
The Committee had several items to report but no action was brought before the Board.
a. Dickison reported that the Committee had received and approved six applications for awards of funding from the Fuller Fund. The Fuller Fund provides a venue for distribution of AAPT journals into underdeveloped countries by providing three-year memberships for select physics teachers in these areas.
b. Valerie Evans, AAPT Director of Member Services had prepared a new advertisement for half-price memberships. The service in its early years attracted many new members for the AAPT but the number of new members has decreased in recent years. However the retention of these acquired members is very good, approximately 75%.
c. The Legacy Program has been implemented. The M&B Committee has begun discussions concerning a “soft sale” marketing strategy for the new service and will likely have a report ready for the Board in January.
d. The M&B Committee will review the information reported in the Membership Directory as to appropriateness.
e. The Treasurer specifically asked Board members to review the report on needs assessment included in the Board packet and to report their reactions to S. Kniseley and V. Evans.
f. The M&B Committee expressed a desire for AAPT to look into long term care insurance programs.
g. The Committee will more closely examine the letter from the AAPT President to the Section Reps, specifically with regard to the suggested collection of dues from the Sections by the national organization. This activity could possibly pose liability issues.
The M&B Committee strongly recommended that the Executive Office prepare and mail letters to colleges and universities local to Philadelphia, specifically encouraging graduate and undergraduate students to attend the Winter Meeting. The Committee also recommended that AAPT host an early reception for students and members in its Winter Meeting, coordinating this effort with the SPS reception hosted by the AIP.
30. Bauder Committee Report.
Dickison, as Chair of the Committee, reported on the success of two funded projects, the Blodgett Elementary School Project (Syracuse Univ.) and the Four Corners Navajo Reservation Project (Colorado State Univ.). Dickison, on behalf of the Bauder Committee, presented the following action items.
a. Dickison moved that the AAPT Executive Board approve an additional $500 for the Blodgett Elementary School Project to be spent in 2001. The motion passed unanimously. Through the activities of this program, Syracuse University is able to provide assistance to teachers in the inner city schools in New York. Monies from the Bauder Fund are used to help these schools purchase science equipment.
b. Dickison moved that the Executive Board approve $500 to fund the “Bring It and Fix It Workshop”, hosted by Syracuse University. Sam Sampere, the leader in this project, offers a workshop for the teachers in the Syracuse area as a way of repairing the school’s broken science equipment. The workshop leader has the required expertise and the workshop has been successful in attracting the area teachers. The motion passed unanimously.
c. Brian Jones, Colorado State University, has been directing the Four Corners Project for the last few years without any realized support from the Navajo Reservation. Recently the administration of the reservation informed Jones that they recognized his constant support to their teachers over the last few years and accordingly they would like to work with him in the future. Therefore, Dickison moved that the Executive Board approve $1000 funding for workshops for the Four Corners Navajo Reservation Project. The motion passed unanimously.
d. Dickison moved that the Executive Board approve $1000 for workshops offered by Brian Jones at Abbiyi Addi Teacher Training College in Ethiopia. This will provide funding for 50 teachers at $20 each. The motion passed unanimously.
In general, discussion of the report from the Bauder Committee, Holbrow suggested that AAPT should encourage project leaders to seek alternate sources of funding beyond the term of funding from AAPT in a manner similar to the requirement that NSF requires of its grants’ writers.
Hubisz stated that he would bring to the Executive Board a proposal allowing the Bauder Committee to allocate less than a specific dollar value without formal Board action but with a subsequent report to the Board on the allocation.
31. Member Expenses for Meetings.
In a special report to the Board, Tom O’Kuma distributed handouts reporting travel, room and board and registration expenses for members attending AAPT national meetings since 1991. The expenses have increased during the last decade and apparently will continue to increase for future meetings. O’Kuma pointed out that this is a major concern for those members who do not receive financial support to attend these meetings. He also added that the high costs of meetings may cause members to attend only one national meeting a year instead of two. Board members reported hearing similar reports from AAPT members.
Khoury expressed the view that while it is legitimate to keep the meetings affordable, it was not clear how AAPT could balance the costs of the meetings and the benefits to the members gained with the added expenses (e.g. availability of technology, food socials).
32. Improving Section-National Links.
Using the comments and suggestions from Board members, Hubisz reported that he had revised the draft letter to the Section Representatives regarding the section-national links. The letters were mailed shortly before the Summer Meeting.
33. Web Services Advisory Group Update.
The web services advisory subgroups met on June 18-19, 2001 for the first time to discuss the AAPT’s current web services and to begin the process of developing a set of website recommendations. The subgroups also met again formally during the Rochester meeting. Each subgroup prepared a reasonable mission statement with both a short-term action plan and a longer-term action plan.
a. The PSRC subgroup plans to expand its outreach to a larger aspect of the community on the short term and its longer term is concerned with the web page. The group is developing a proposal for a digital library and a report will be prepared for the October Board meeting. Short-term actions include developing a site map, removing tags and getting a search engine set up for the PSRC. Long-term action will entail hiring a half-time staff person. Fehrs asked about the feasibility of publishing contributed and plenary papers on the web site. Holbrow responded, stating that this action is premature since often times there is not a paper behind the presentation.
b. The TPT subgroup has determined that its goal is to get the journal online. Selected articles will be available via pdf format by the Fall 2001 and by the Fall 2002, all articles will be available. The group estimated that it will cost approximately $15K to set up the service and about $20K a year to maintain the service. A projected third phase allows for the addition of resources to the online journal, enhancing the value of TPT. These could be weekly updates to teachers, online letters to the editor and links to additional resources.
c. The administrative subgroup completed a draft sitemap in time for the Summer Meeting, and AAPT members were asked to view a paper version of the sitemap during the meeting and offer comment. The sitemap will also be posted on the AAPT website from mid-July to early August. An email blast will solicit input from members not attending the meeting in Rochester.
With current resources available, the AAPT can make changes that will make the site more user friendly. In addition, special features can be added, such as forms for submissions from Sections directly to the national office. The main goal for the home page is to make AAPT the primary brand on everything.
34. Area Committee Perspectives.
In response to a directive from Hubisz, Board members visiting Area Committees polled the membership concerning the publishing of paper abstracts. The general reaction was that AAPT should continue to print the abstracts in the Announcer.
Mamola reported that the Undergraduate Education Committee had said they would be willing to assume some areas of focus presently under the province of the Professional Concerns Committee, but did feel that the PC Committee should continue to exist. Mamola also reported that some sentiments had been expressed during the Instructional Media Committee that this committee and the Computers Committee should be combined. Haas reported that the Two-Year College Committee wanted to prepare and distribute another newsletter to TYC members.
F. Peterson and Haas reported that the Committee on Laboratories would like to have a Lab II Focus Meeting in the near future. Fehrs expressed, on behalf of the International Committee, their request for AAPT to host a reception for international attendees early in the Winter Meeting, akin to the First Timers’ Reception. Hubisz reported that the Professional Concerns Committee appeared to have been revitalized.
Tobochnick stated that the discussions within the Committee for Research in Physics Education concerning future publications from the PER community paralleled discussions held earlier during the meeting of Publications. Tobochnik and Khoury will develop a discussion document concerning PER publications for Board consideration.
35. Executive Session II.
Due to time restrictions, Hubisz announced that the remaining items on the agenda would be handled by email. He then called the meeting into Executive Session at 10:55 AM.
Hubisz adjourned this session of the Board at 11:46 AM.
Mary Beth Monroe, Secretary