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Session 80 - Education, Green Flashes and Future Missions.
Oral session, Thursday, June 11

[80.01] Report on Astronomy Workshops for College Teachers, 1993-97

S. J. Little, I. R. Little-Marenin, C. D. Garmany (CASA, University of Colorado)

We held workshops for 20 college teachers of astronomy each summer at the University of Colorado in the years 1993-1997. To be eligible for the workshops each participant must have taught or plan to teach an astronomy class, and he or she must have no professional training in astronomy. The purpose of these workshops was to address the problem of the large number of college professors who teach astronomy with little or no astronomy coursework in their educational background.

We developed very intensive workshops of two weeks duration. The days were filled with each participant working on several laboratory experiments (including many computer-based labs) and participating in discussions, lectures from CU faculty on areas of recent developments in astronomy, and demonstrations of laboratory equipment. The evenings were scheduled for observing sessions when clear. Visits to local observatories were also scheduled. We will present the results of a recent survey of all the participants in these workshops on the effectiveness of the workshop for their teaching and on which areas of the workshop were most useful to them.

These workshops were funded by the NSF through the Undergraduate Faculty Enhancement division. We gratefully acknowledge the great usefulness of working with Dr. George Mumford at Tufts University on workshops of a similar nature in the period 1989-1992.

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