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45th DPS Meeting Workshop Descriptions
Last updated: Monday

Engaging ALL Students: Effective Strategies for Teaching Diverse College Students

Attendees receive a $250 stipend for participating in this 2-day teaching excellence institute that provides faculty with effective strategies, classroom-ready tools, and instructional materials designed to effectively teach diverse student populations, especially college courses that include future teachers. These teaching approaches intellectually engage students through interactive lecturing, collaborative learning through targeted tutorial activities, and scaffolded inquiry investigations using online Earth and planetary science data. Focused on instructors interested in engaging a wide diversity of non-science majoring students, the workshop is appropriate for faculty, post-docs, grad students, and advanced high school teachers. 

Participants in this workshop will learn how to structure effective student learning experiences using online resources such as the NASA’s Planetary Data System, Space Telescope Science Institute databases, USGS, and/or NOAA data. All participants will receive copies of classroom-ready and classroom-tested inquiry teaching materials appropriate for a diversity of undergraduate, non-science majoring students and future teachers. Additionally, participants will be shown how to make their own assignments based on the principles of a backwards faded scaffolding approach, developed at the CAPER Center for Astronomy & Physics Education Research.

This workshop is facilitated by well-known Earth and space science educators and authors, Stephanie Slater, CAPER Center for Astronomy & Physics Education Research; Tim Slater, U. Wyoming; Rick Pomeroy, University of California-Davis; Debby Stork, University of Dubuque; and Sophia Marshall, Tougaloo College, Mississippi. Additional presenters will be invited to participate. The workshop is sponsored by the University of Wyoming Excellence in Higher Education Endowment, the NSF Transforming Undergraduate Education, and NASA Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences programs. Participants are encouraged, but not required, to bring their own laptops, equipped with MS Office and a CD-ROM drive.

PRESENTERS: Stephanie Slater, CAPER Center for Astronomy & Physics Education Research; Tim Slater, U. Wyoming; Rick Pomeroy, University of California-Davis; Debby Stork, University of Dubuque; and Sophia Marshall, Tougaloo College, Mississippi


  • Saturday, 5 October 2013
  • Sunday, 6 October 2013

Time 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Cost: $0

Planetary Science: Progress with Suborbital Reusable Launch Vehicles (sRLV)

Suborbital Reusable Launch Vehicles (sRLV), ranging from balloons to spacecraft, provide new, cost-effective platforms for planetary science observations and experiments. From planned balloon observations of Comet ISON to contained simulations of planetary formation processes in zero-G, planetary scientists are now utilizing these vehicles in their research. The modest costs and development times for suborbital missions provide excellent training opportunities for future spacecraft mission PIs and developers of spacecraft instruments. Suborbital platforms offer advantages for increasing technology readiness level for flight experiments at a fraction of the cost of traditional orbital platforms. The most recent Planetary Sciences Decadal Survey report, Vision and Voyages for Planetary Science 2013 – 2022, highlights the potential advantages of using suborbital platforms for planetary science experiments. This workshop updates the use of rSLVs for instrumentation, spacecraft and mission design to address and answer planetary science questions. Composed of talks and open discussion, this workshop will present science results and lessons learned from planetary scientists engaged in research, educational and outreach activities using reusable commercial suborbital vehicles, and explore opportunities for flying and funding experiments.

Date: Sunday, 6 October
Time: 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Cost: $0


Negotiation Skills for Planetary Scientists

This two-hour workshop, hosted by the DPS Professional Development subcommittee, will inform and train participants in negotiation techniques, with content tailored specifically for planetary scientists. Workshop is open to all levels: students through professionals. Participants will learn the real-world value and theory behind negotiation, what can and cannot be negotiated at different career stages, and how to negotiate in different planetary career tracks (e.g., university vs. national lab vs. soft money vs. alternative careers), through question and answer with an expert panel and hands-on exercises.

Date: Sunday, 6 October 2013
Time: 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Cost: $0