Dr. Andrew Heckler began his career in the fields of Cosmology and Astrophysics. He became interested in the relatively new field of physics education research 15 years ago. Working with colleagues in psychology and education, he studied techniques of student learning for physics and designing and implementing classroom and online instructional interventions.
Dr. Heckler is the director of education for the National Science Foundation Materials Research Science & Engineering Centers Center for Emergent Materials which includes projects such as a learning and retention study of physics graduate students. Other projects at the Center include the iterative development and implementation of curricular materials for core graduate physics courses concentrating on student engagement.
In the classroom, Dr. Heckler is focused on using research-based best practices, continually adapting and adjusting course materials and methods to engage students. He has enjoyed meetings with mentees. Besides general discussion around the University Institute for Teaching and Learning Faculty Foundation, Impact, Transformation online course topics, he has enjoyed discussions around the syllabi for the upcoming semesters. The opportunity to share perspectives and ask, and be asked, critical and productive questions have helped improve course structure, goals, and methods.