Workshop Task Force


Alice K. B. Monet, AAS Secretary
Alice K. B. Monet
AAS Secretary

Statement of Task
This fast-moving Task Force will assess the organization and impact of workshops at AAS meetings. Its formal charge is to assess the following questions:

  1. Clearly define the goals of AAS workshops: what do they add to AAS meetings and how do they serve AAS’s mission?
  2. Assess the format of AAS workshops. Is this format helping AAS members succeed at those goals? Would it be effective to add workshops during meeting weekdays, in addition to (or partially replacing) the Saturday–Sunday workshop schedule? 
  3. Assess the process of workshop proposal selection: is the current process sustainable and effective? Would it be prudent to formally bring in other staff (e.g., the Education Specialist) or committees (e.g., Education or Employment) as part of the review and selection process? Given the received proposals, is there an effective process to “consolidate” similar proposals (e.g., if there are five proposals on undergraduate teaching, could these be combined into one or two workshops)?
  4. Assess how workshops are included in AAS communications and marketing. In an abstract sense, workshops are prominently put forward as a key part of how AAS members may engage with astronomy teaching. However, workshops are largely missing from the marketing materials of individual AAS meetings, potentially limiting their impact. 
  5. Should workshops endorsed by AAS entities (e.g., AAS staff and committees) be treated separately from those organized entirely by third parties? Do we prioritize one type over the other? Are third-party workshops necessary and/or desired? What constraints, expectations, or requirements should be put into place for third-party workshops?
  6. How can the Society assess the value and impact of workshops held at AAS meetings? Should it do so?
  7. Any other closely related concerns that arise.

The goal is to present a report to the AAS Board of Trustees in June 2024, in time for recommendations to take effect for the January 2025 AAS meeting.

Committee Chair

Committee Members