The UK Institute of Physics has established a website, Teaching Advanced Physics, to support new teachers of physics. The site contains advice on how to prepare lessons, as well as lots of ideas for experiments and worksheets.
The UK Institute of Physics Education page offers support for beginning teachers as well as teachers in general. has also established an on-line physics resource an for teachers and students in the 11- 19 age range. The Teachers section features Experiments, Lessons Problems, Answers, Tests, and Texts.
In Just in Time Teaching, students answer questions online before class, promoting preparation for class and encouraging them to come to class with a "need to know." Instructors use the responses to fine tune their presentation and incorporate student quotes into the class. The website includes examples from Physics.
A comprehensive set of Just in Time Teaching resources covering all of physics under the categories of 'Warm ups', 'Puzzles', 'What is Physics Good For?' and 'Lab Preps'.
In Just in Time Teaching, students answer questions online before class, promoting preparation for class and encouraging them to come to class with a "need to know." Teachers can then use the responses to fine tune their presentation and incorporate student quotes into the class.
Instruction is organised around active student construction of conceptual models in an interactive learning community. Students engage with simple scenarios to build, test and apply the handful of scientific models that represent the content core of physics. You need to become a member to access the curriculum materials. The membership fee is US$ 60 per year.
The Diagnoser is a set of diagnostic instructional tools for middle and high school teachers and students. The tools are sets of questions as formative assessments (e.g., assessments to inform learning and instruction rather than assign scores.) Students receive feedback on their thinking as they work through their assignment. Teachers can access reports on students' thinking related to the assigned content." To access the material you need to register and set up a username and password. You can set up your classes and give each student a unique username and password and assign specific topics. There is no cost. For further details check entry D258 in the file 'Selected items from Vicphysics News' in the 'News' Page.
These materials are effective means of teachers evaluating their teaching practice. They are not really designed to be assessment tools.
The Force Concept Inventory (FCI) is designed to assess student understanding of Forces. It consists of 30 multiple choice questions on kinematics, Newton's First, Second, and Third Laws, the superposition principle, and types of forces (such as gravitation, friction). Each question has distracters that reflect common misconceptions. The FCI is described half way down the page, a password needs to be requested before the FCI can be downloaded. There is also a Mechanics Baseline Test (MBT) available at this website. The MBT is a step beyond the FCI and can be used as a post test. It also requires a password. The FCI now comes in different versions: a Gender FCI, an animated FCI and a familiar context FCI as well as numerous languages.
This is a pdf file of a Energy Concept Inventory, prepared by Michigan State University. It contains 35 multiple choice items.
FMCE is a survey containing 47 items in a multiple-choice multiple-response format. This covers a wider variety of topics than the Forces Concept Inventory. You need to register with PhysPort to access the material. The PhysPort page includes question examples, resources and related educational research and references.
EMCS is similar in format to the Force Concept Inventory and the Force and Motion Conceptual Evaluation. Its purpose is to understand the difficulties students have in interpreting the concepts of energy and momentum and in correctly identifying and applying them in different physical situations. You need to register with PhysPort to access the material. The PhysPort page includes question examples, resources and related educational research and references.
The purose of the BEMA is to assess students’ qualitative understanding of basic concepts in electricity and magnetism, in particular: circuits, electrostatics, magnetic fields and forces. You need to register with PhysPort to access the material. The PhysPort page includes question examples, resources and related educational research and references.
The purpose of the CSEM is to assess students’ understanding of electrostatics, magnetic fields and forces and Faraday's law . You need to register with PhysPort to access the material. The PhysPort page includes question examples, resources and related educational research and references.
The purpose of the MCS is to assess students’ understanding of magnetic fields and forces, and Faraday's law. You need to register with PhysPort to access the material. The PhysPort page includes question examples, resources and related educational research and references.
The purpose of the EMCA is to assess students’ understanding of electrostatics, electric fields and force, circuits, magnetism and induction. You need to register with PhysPort to access the material. The PhysPort page includes question examples, resources and related educational research and references.
The American Association of Physics Teachers has a very comprehensive site called Physical Science Resources Centre.
The WWW Virtual Library for the History of Science, Technology & Medicine is a virtual library of Internet resources on the history of science, including biographies, journals and organisations.
The Australian Academy of Science has developed the Internet site Nova: Science in the News. The aim of Nova is to provide teachers and students with accurate and up-to-date information about the scientific, technological, health and environmental issues reported in the media.
ExploraNet is the site of the Exploratorium, San Francisco, which houses 650 innovative and exciting interactive exhibits in the areas of science, art and human perception. On this website, you will find pictures, news items on science, and electronic versions of the exhibits. The museum is constantly experimenting with new ways to present science on the Internet.
Deakin University has an extensive set of activities for Science Years 5 to 10, that addresses many common alternative conceptions of students. It has sections on i) Astronomy, ii) Earth's climate, iii) Earth's structure, iv) Electricity, v) Force, Motion and Machines, vi) Light, vii) Magnetism, viii) Sound, ix) Water and a few Chemistry topics. Each section opens with a list of key concepts expressed in simple clear language, as well as a list of common alternative conceptions. At the bottom of the page is a link to a pdf file of activities and resources.
A collection of articles produced by the International Commission on Physics Education (ICPE)
A Set of Fermi questions on estimation.
Open-ended game-like simulations with a clear interface and minimal text. They are free and are based on research into how students learn.
The Contemporary Physics Education Project is a non-profit organization of teachers, educators, and physicists located around the world. CPEP materials present the current understanding of the fundamental nature of matter and energy, incorporating the major research findings of recent years. It distributes a range of high quality charts.
An excellent site covering science from Prep to Yr 12 . It is a rich resource for science teachers and students, with new material being added almost every day.
Built with the same engine as slashdot, Nanodot is the place to go for the latest news and breakthroughs in nanotechnology.
How Stuff Works is a virtual library of information. It is not just useful for years 7 to 10 but senior students and teachers will find it of value. It features articles with graphics and animation, and many questions are archived. The answers are well written with links provided.
The American Institute of Physics has a history that features on-line exhibitions, e.g. Sakharov: Soviet Physics, Nuclear Weapons and Human Rights: The Discovery of Global Warming etc.
This is a "weekly physics feature magazine" site run by The American Physical Society. Areas include: Physics in Action, People in Physics, Picture of the Week, Physics News, Physics Links and How Things Work.
A How Things Work site by Louis Bloomfield from The University of Virginia
The Institute of Physics has an on-line Journal "Nanotechnology".
The American Institute of Physics History Centre has historical photographs of physicists and astronomers. Over 1000 are available on line.
Learn how to take and edit digital photographs using visual tutorials that emphasise concept over procedure, independent of specific digital camera or lens. Topics range from basic camera tips to advanced techniques. There are over 40 tutorials from 'Understanding digital camera sensors' to 'Photo stitching'.
A UK youtube website for junior science. It features podcasts on numerous topics including many physics topics. It has a world wide audience.
The US National Academy of Engineering initiated a world wide survey to generate a list of grand challenges and opportunities for engineering facing those born at the dawn of this new century. Their website has material on ‘hopes or world needs’ and ‘innovations or technologies, ideas and research’ particularly of those in the 20th century.
The Institute of Physics is a UK organisation that does much for physics teachers. This opening page on 'Education' has links such as: 'I am new to teaching physics', 'I am a student', 'I am a teacher', 'I am thinking of becoming a teacher', etc with many resources and helpful advice under each. Their journal 'Physics Education' is highly recommended.
This website features i) Tutorials, ii) a Multimedia Studio of animations and applets on the full range of physics content as well as Quicktime movies and iii) Shockwave files. There are also prac and teaching resources for teachers.
ComPADRE is a US based network of free online resource collections supporting academics, teachers and students in Physics and Astronomy Education. Each of the collections contain materials designed for a specific community. The teacher section has resources fro K - 12 teachers, Physics images and articles to stimulate interest and a link to the highly regarded Physical Sciences Resource Centre (PSRC). There is also an extensive physics education research section. The section for students features tutorials, magazines and career information.
Physclips is a free platform of multi-media resources for learning or teaching physics at the level of senior high school or introductory university level. It currently comprises sections on Mechanics, Sound and Waves, Light, Electricity and Magnetism and Thermal physics.
This guide consists of an annotated selection of some of the best websites on the history of science. The guide has been divided into two primary sections: general history of science and history of specific disciplines. General history of science resources have been further subdivided by resource type (e.g. journals, pathfinder sites, etc.). while the sites about the history of a specific discipline have been grouped by discipline, with disciplines listed alphabetically
STEM learning is a UK website from which you can download science curriculum materials, mainly of UK and European origin that have been produced over that last few decades including high quality materials such as Nuffield Physics, SATIS, SISCON, etc.
Physlets is a set of interactive illustrations, explorations, and problems for introductory physics. There are over 800 interactive materials covering Mechanics, Fluids, Waves, Thermodynamics, Circuits, Electromagnetism and Optics. The bottom of the home page has links to Tracker and Physlet Quantum Physics.
This Physics Classroom Complete Tool kits has tool kits on 35 topics across Motion, Electricity and Light. Each tool kit features background readings, interactive simulations with worksheets, Videos and animations,educational research, practical activities including experiments and demonstrations, interactive question modules and problem solving exercises.
Professors Richard Gunstone and Richard White from Monash University, have produced an online publication titled 'Physics Questions without Numbers'. It consists of over 200 questions with a two page introduction on the origin and intent of the questions and a page of advice on their use. There are 144 questions on Mechanics and Heat, 41 on Light, Sound and Waves, 32 on Electricity and Magnetism, 8 on Nuclear Physics and 4 general questions.
The questions are not diagnostic questions per se, as no solutions are provided, but they give students an opportunity to think about physics questions and come up with logical explanations.
The file includes the following statement: The resources in this document are made available without charge via this website for use by teachers at all levels with their students, and for other ‘not for profit’ uses. When such use is made, attribution of the source of the material would be appreciated.
Lightning is one of nature's most spectacular phenomenon. Tom Warner seeks to document lightning's beauty, power, and ferocity using an array of optical and electromagnetic sensors in hopes of better understanding its behavior. Since 2007, he has used high-speed cameras capable of recording lightning at up to 100,000 images per second. These cameras enable us to see lightning like never before as we can clearly watch lightning propagate downward from the clouds or upward from tall objects. The website features Investigations, Projects and a Gallery.
A detailed fact sheet addressing 11 specific questions with various words in the answers hyperlinked to explanations and definitions. The website is from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health (US).
This website from Penn State University (US) serves as a forum for news, views and discussion about all things related to the science of food: food chemistry, microbiology, engineering, process technology, and nutrition. Also discussed are issues related to food safety, GMO foods, organic foods, health and wellness. There is also a significant section on Food Physics.
An on-line Journal of quality, about 40 page, that comes out about three times a year.
NASA website that features, images, videos, audios, interactives and downloads.
A Yale University site on 'The Physics of Cell Phones'. It includes several sections including lesson plans and teacher resources.
The INIS is the responsibility of the IAEA, the International Atomic Energy Agency. INIS is one of the world's largest collections of published information on the peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology. It offers online access to a unique collection of non-conventional literature. The information is technical and search terms need to be specific.
Physics InSight is a series of slide shows designed to inform and excite undergraduates about physics, but they may have some useful content for secondary students. Slide show topics include: Diverse physics careers, Physicist salary information, Current physics research, Resources for undergraduate physics majors and Opportunities for undergraduates.
SunTrek is a UK website designed for students. It explores the Sun and its effect on Earth. There are images, videos, activities and classroom resources. The style is more suited to junior secondary, but should engage older students.
Astrosphere New Media Association is dedicated to promoting science and skeptical thought through internet-based technologies and distribution. They focus their efforts on the creation of technologies and content that enable better astronomy communications and greater astronomy content access for the public. These technologies can take many forms, and include (but are not limited to): blogs, podcasts, social networks, interactive data tools, and community content sites (such as wikis).
Several pages of information including text, interviews and photos.
The site is prepared by the US EPA with US references. There is an extensive range of resources available elsewhere on the site.
The IEEE Global History Network is a wiki-based platform dedicated to preserving and promoting the history of innovation in the fields of electrical engineering and its allied fields. There is considerable educational material but much is related to history, but the site is very comprehensive.
The Perimeter Institute has on file videos of an enormous number of public lectures and talks. The webpage has very useful search options. It offers 'Public lectures' and 'All talks' (the latter includes lectures too academic for secondary students), as well as choice of audience (general public, students, teachers) and education level (basic, intermediate and advanced). Some of the talks include: The Secret Life of a Snowflake, My Top 10 Bonkers Things about the Universe, Before the Big Bang (Roger Penrose) and What Banged?.
The website has information on each of the discoveries at the laboratory by J J Thomson, Rutherford, CTR Wilson, the Braggs, Aston, Chadwick, Cockcroft and Walton, Crick and Watson, Bell and Frisch. The information is largely text based in simple language with some images and animations.
This website of applets by Fu-Kwan Hwang from National Taiwan University has been running for many years. It now has contributions from many people across most areas of physics. It is designed along Bulletin Board lines.
A collection of applets at Central Connecticut State University (CCSU). Mechanics(16), Electricity, Magnetism & Light (37). Some are traditional and some are links to PhET.
Quicktime animation studies by the Physics Dept of New York University on Waves and Special relativity. The studies are simple and effective with clear explanations.
Images from NASA's ASTER project. ASTER stands for Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer. There are images of cities, landscapes, glaciers, etc.
The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Artificial Retina Project is a collaborative, multi-institutional effort to develop an implantable microelectronic retinal prosthesis that restores useful vision to people blinded by retinal diseases. The ultimate goal of the project is to restore reading ability, facial recognition, and unaided mobility in people with retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration. There is information about how the AR works and patient stories.
This is a short article in the Journal 'Foreign Policy' by the author of 'Physics for Future Presidents'. It addresses the issues of Terrorism, Energy, Nuclear Energy, Global warming and Space.
This is a website of the Science Education Resource Center in the US. The site is nominally about improving the teaching of geoscience, but the resources and strategies on Assessment, The Affective Domain, Teaching Methods and Metacognition apply to science, if not learning, in general.
Since 1992 the British Parliamentary Office has produced short briefing notes, along with occasional longer reports that focus on current science and technology issues. The notes aim to summarise the key issues on a particular topic in attempt to anticipate policy implications for parliamentarians, so they are not just summaries of the underlying science.
However, the notes are very accessible in language, comprehensive and authoritative and would be useful background material for students. They do tend to have a UK focus and each is about 4 pages long. So far 421 briefings have been prepared.
Physlets is an interactive introduction to quantum physics. There are over 200 interactive materials covering special relativity, the need for a quantum theory, quantum theory and applications. The bottom of the home page has links to Tracker and Physlet Physics.