- American Physical Society Sites
- Meetings & Events
- Policy & Advocacy
- Careers In Physics
- About APS
- Become a Member
The American Physical Society's (APS) Committee on Education (COE) seeks to recognize excellence in undergraduate physics education and support best practices in education at the undergraduate level by accepting applications from physics departments and/or undergraduate-serving programs in physics for the COE Award for Improving Undergraduate Physics Education. All programs that have a significant impact on undergraduate physics students are eligible to apply. Applicants should consider how their program successfully
APS will recognize one to three programs and departments each year.
Awardees for Improving Undergraduate Physics Education
In contrast to the successful Excellence in Physics Education Award, this effort will recognize multiple institutions, and focus specifically on undergraduate programs. We anticipate these two awards will complement each other. The Committee on Education intends this award to recognize exemplary programs among the larger physics community.
Excellence in Physics Education Award
Applicants should complete the attached data form and submit an application documenting the achievements and improvements for which the program is seeking recognition. The total length of the application, including supporting documentation, should not exceed 10 pages.
The application should describe:
Please note that it is neither expected nor required that any given program will exhibit excellence or improvement in all of these areas. It is expected that recognized programs will have distinction in one or more of these areas. Applications should concentrate on what is novel or unique about the program.
The application should provide relevant data and documentary evidence for claims of improvement, transformation in the program, growth, impact, and other successes for which the program is seeking recognition. Data provided should show evidence that improvements have been sustained over a period of at least a few years. Supporting letters may be included but are not required.
The COE seeks to recognize improvement and success at all types of institutions, ranging from large research universities to small colleges. Applications will be judged within the appropriate context to the greatest extent possible.
Institutions may submit only one application per year. Applications should arrive from the program director or department chair. To encourage broad participation by many programs, and to encourage individual programs to commit to sustained improvement and achievement, awardees will be recognized for three years on the APS website. We encourage programs to submit new applications after the award period has ended.
Applications must be received by August 1.
To apply, email the following in a single PDF document to the APS Education Department (email@example.com):
Supplementary materials (of up to 10 pages) will be accepted, but the two-page narrative should describe programmatic efforts completely, independent of supplements. Institutions may submit only one application per year. Applications should arrive from the program's director or department chair. To encourage broad participation by many programs, and to encourage individual programs to commit to sustained improvement and achievement, awardees will be recognized for three years on the APS website. We encourage programs to submit new applications after the award period has ended.
The APS Committee on Education's Subcommittee on Undergraduate Education will review applications and make recommendations to the APS COE for their fall meeting. The entire committee will make final decisions based on the subcommittee's recommendations. We encourage representatives of the programs receiving an award to participate in a public recognition ceremony that will typically occur at the APS April Meeting. No travel funds are available to bring recipients to the award reception, nor is it required that they attend. A section of the APS Undergraduate website will keep a list of current and historical awardees with active links to their programs.