Since 1997, this forum has discussed important issues common to geophysical science departments, including research funding, program assessment, modernization of post-secondary curricula, increasing faculty diversity, and student career planning. It also holds annual workshops immediately prior to the AGU Fall Meeting and offers webinars throughout the year. This group meets jointly on a biennial basis with the Heads and Chairs of Atmospheric Sciences departments.
Sections & Focus Groups Education and Public Outreach
Many sections have committees or working groups that coordinate the education and public outreach activities for them. Learn more about their roles, activities, and officers below.
Space Physics and Aeronomy
The Education and Public Outreach committee (E/PO) of the AGU Space Physics and Aeronomy (SPA) section is comprised of AGU research scientists and science educators who are dedicated to promoting science education at all levels both nationally and internationally, and providing information about AGU science to public audiences.
The SPA – EPO committee has three goals:
- To promote and share information about E/PO events and best practices in the field.
- To provide support for AGU scientists interested in becoming involved in E/PO activities.
- To participate and support AGU wide education and outreach events from the SPA section.
The work done by the SPA-EPO committee and its individual members supports all of the Goals and many of the Objectives set out in the AGU Strategic Plan (see the end of http://www.agu.org/about/strategic_plan.shtml). Here is a list of the specific objectives that the work of the committee supports directly or indirectly.
The Work of the Committee
Through the committee, members of the SPA-EPO community can inform each other about on going work and events via monthly telephone conferences and the AGU annual Fall meeting. These meetings are also a good venue to organize AGU sessions focused on education in space physics and aeronomy. In addition, the committee helps organize and support AGU Education and Public Outreach efforts such as Exploration Station and the GIFT (Geophysical Information for Teachers) Workshops at the Fall AGU. Many members of the committee are supported though funding from NASA and NSF.
The committee leadership is made up of a chair, vice-chair and secretary. The leadership communicate regularly with the SPA leadership, other AGU education committees and working groups, and the AGU education leadership.
Chair — Martha Wawro, Heliophysics Science Division at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, firstname.lastname@example.org
The chair has primary responsibility for leading and representing the committee. The chair is responsible for organizing regular committee meetings, communicating with the SPA leadership, communicating with other AGU education committees and working groups, and communicating with the broader SPA. The chair is also responsible for keeping the committee members updated as to broader activities around the AGU that the members may want to be involved in. The committee chair first serves as vice-chair for two years and then serves as chair for two years.
Vice-Chair — Randy Russell, Spark, Science Education Group at UCAR (University Corporation for Atmospheric Research)/NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research) email@example.com
The vice-Chair is primarily responsible for supporting the chair and becoming familiar with all aspects of the committee’s work and its relationship to the larger AGU community. The vice-Chair is elected to a two year term after which she/he will take over the committee chair.
Secretary — Michelle Nichols-Yehling, The Adler Planetarium, Chicago, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Secretary has primary responsibility for taking notes for the meeting and making those available to the group.
AGU members, both educators and researchers, who are interested in Space Physics or Space Science education are encouraged to joint the committee. Contact one of the current officers to be added to the email list and be informed about committee activities.
Past chairs are still very active the education and the community. Feel free to contact them with any questions you may have.
Nicholas Gross, 2010-2012, email@example.com
Mark Moldwin, 2008–2010, firstname.lastname@example.org
Deborah Scherrer, 2006–2008, email@example.com
James Thieman, 2004–2006, firstname.lastname@example.org
Roberta Johnson, 2000–2004, email@example.com
Cherilynn Morrow, 1996–2000, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ramon Lopez, 1992–1996, email@example.com
Mark J Engebretson 1988–1992, firstname.lastname@example.org
Guide for researchers [pdf] who want to become involved in education and public outreach
Planetary Science Education Working Group
The Education and Public Outreach committee (E/PO) of the AGU Planetary Sciences section is comprised of AGU research scientists and science educators who are dedicated to promoting planetary science education at all levels both nationally and internationally, and providing information about AGU science to public audiences.
The Planetary E/PO committee has four goals:
- To promote and support professional development of early career scientists and students in planetary sciences
- To develop a network of planetary science educators that share information about E/PO events, opportunities and best practices in the field
- To provide support for AGU scientists interested in becoming involved in E/PO activities
- To participate and support AGU-wide education and outreach events from the Planetary Sciences section
The work done by the Planetary E/PO committee and its individual members supports all of the Goals and many of the Objectives set out in the AGU Strategic Plan (see the end of www.agu.org/about/strategic_plan.shtml).
The Work of the Committee
Through the committee, members of the Planetary Science EPO community can inform each other about on-going work and events via monthly telephone conferences and the AGU annual Fall Meeting. These meetings are also a good venue to organize AGU sessions focused on education in planetary sciences.
In addition, the committee helps organize and support AGU Education and Public Outreach efforts, including:
- The Student-Scientist Mixer at the Fall AGU meeting that brings graduate students and scientists together for an evening of information and fun
- Exploration Station, a family-based afternoon of hands-on activities,
- GIFT (Geophysical Information for Teachers) Teacher Professional Development Workshops at the Fall AGU
The committee leadership is made up of a chair, vice-chair and secretary. The leadership communicates regularly with the Planetary Science Section leadership, other AGU education committees and working groups, and the AGU education leadership, as well as their counterparts from other professional science organizations, such as the Division of Planetary Sciences of the AAS.
Chair: Brooke Hsu, Lunar and Planetary Institute, email@example.com
Vice-chair: Sanlyn Buxner, Planetary Science Institute, firstname.lastname@example.org
Secretary: Erin Wood, Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, Erin.Wood@lasp.colorado.edu
Click here for a current list of members and their expertise.
AGU members, both educators and researchers, who are interested in Planetary Science education are encouraged to join the committee. Contact one of the current officers to be added to the email list and be informed about committee activities.
Volcanology, Geochemistry, Petrology
The Volcanology, Geochemistry, and Petrology (VGP) Education and Outreach Committee is dedicated to achieving improved accessibility to educational resources related to the understanding our planet, with particular emphasis on volcanology and chemistry of the Earth. We strive to provide VGP membership with direct links to the educational community at all levels with the goal of broadening the impacts of this exciting body of research. We facilitate development of a wide variety of tools and media for enhanced understanding of volcanoes, their essential role in shaping our oceans and atmosphere, and for bettering understanding of their hazards.
The Work of the Committee
The VGP Education and Outreach Committee (VGP E&O) is actively involved in developing contacts throughout the educational community. Additionally, an area of focus is examining rewards for scientists engaging in E&O activities; the committee believes that these need to be enhanced and clarified. VGP E&O promotes best practices, especially for E&O projects described in NSF CAREER proposals and as broader impacts in proposals submitted to NSF and similar funding agencies. Leadership of the Education and Outreach Committee has just changed. As a result, we are in a transitional period, focusing on development of our short- and long-term objectives. Updates will be forthcoming to this site.
Another area of focus is quantitative literacy (QL). VGP is ripe to participate in QL and benefit from the experience of others. Resources are numerous, including a set of modules developed for physical volcanology for use in advanced undergraduate and graduate courses. Interested faculty should also see articles on QL in the Journal of Geoscience Education and in the relatively new open-access journal Numeracy. These resources can help faculty teach quantitative concepts in undergraduate and graduate courses as well as provide a platform for reaching the math education community, and for exposing students at the K-12 level to the mysteries of the solid earth and volcanism, viewed through the lens of quantitative thinking.
Other committee goals include developing a webpage and Facebook group for VGP members and educators to facilitate development of new resources and effective use of existing resources. The committee plans to have VGP section members join the VGP E&O committee simply by registering as part of this group, hopefully stimulating broad participation in VGP E&O activities. Committee members are particularly interested in promoting discussion of big ideas and misconceptions in VGP learning.
Chuck Connor (Chair) University of South Florida, email@example.com
Steve Carey, University of Rhode Island, firstname.lastname@example.org
Howard Day, UC Davis, email@example.com
Karen Harpp, Colgate University, firstname.lastname@example.org
Diana Roman, University of South Florida, email@example.com
Bill Rose, Michigan Tech, firstname.lastname@example.org
AGU members, both educators and researchers, who are interested Volcanology, Geochemistry, and Petrology education are encouraged to join the committee. Contact one of the current officers to be added to the email list and be informed about committee activities.
Digital Library for Earth System Education
Vhub (collaborative volcano research and risk mitigation)
Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College
Windows to the Universe
Steve Carey’s Vesuvius tour
Resources for Scientists interested in Education and Outreach
Below are some resources for professionals interested in becoming involved in education and outreach issues:
A brochure for researchers interested in outreach.
A pdf of online guides for scientists interested in Outreach compiled by Dr. Mangala Sharma, NASA SMD Astrophysics EPO Forum.
From the Institute for Broadening Participation, a Manual for Mentors and Mentees
Education Special Interest Group
ESIG is open to all AGU members who are interested in issues dealing with K-12, undergraduate, and graduate education as well as STEM education and outreach. The members receive monthly news updates about Fall meeting events, outreach activities, and national initiatives from AGU Education staff. Click here to join the ESIG listserv.