I am a physics and astronomy education researcher, instructor, curriculum designer and instructor professional developer. I take an asset-based, collaborative approach to supporting educators’ agency and creativity in teaching. I have strong interest and experience in work related to equity and inclusion, inquiry-based teaching, and international contexts. My work takes place in Canada, the U.S., West Africa and Central Asia. My background is in theoretical astrophysics.
My B.S. is in Astrophysics from the California Institute of Technology (2003) and my Ph.D. is in Astrophysics from the University of California, Berkeley (2011). I was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics in Toronto (2012-15), studying how massive black holes in the centers of galaxies eat stars. In 2015 I transitioned my career to science education, becoming a Science Teaching & Learning Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of British Columbia (2015-2018), affiliated with the Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative. In 2018-2020, I conducted research on faculty professional development, related to the physics education resource PhysPort. I also have worked as an Educational Consultant for the University of Central Asia (2018-2019).
- I am co-founder and Co-Director of the Pan-African School for Emerging Astronomers (PASEA), a bi-annual program for African university students held four times so far in Nigeria and Ghana. The program is formerly known as the West African International Summer School for Young Astronomers (WAISSYA). For 2021, we are planning to expand to another region of Africa.
- I wrote articles on PhysPort with advice for moving your physics or astronomy course online during Covid-19 | Main article | Moving labs online | SEADS Seminar
- I developed the Physics curriculum for the Earth and Environmental Science major at the University of Central Asia (UCA), which I will teach online in Fall 2020. I have led pre-semester workshops on teaching for UCA faculty, and am conducting research on professional development called "teaching triangles" | Workshop resources for UCA faculty
- I have studied “paired teaching” at UBC — a paradigm in which a less experienced faculty member teaches a full-semester course together with a more experienced instructor, with the goal of professional development. See our 2019 article in the Journal of College Science Teaching.
- I led development of an inquiry-based lab sequence on Distances in the Universe used at PASEA/WAISSYA and in an introductory astronomy course at UBC. Some of this work was with the Institute for Scientist & Engineer Educators at UC Santa Cruz.
- I contributed to development and teaching of the Structured Quantitative Inquiry introductory physics labs at UBC, and published research on how student attitudes about science develop through this lab course.
I acknowledge that I live and much of my work takes place in Vancouver, British Columbia, on the unceded traditional territory of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations.