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ERIC Number: ED505780
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002
Pages: 13
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
Guidelines for High School Physics Programs
American Association of Physics Teachers (NJ1)
The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) developed this document as a resource for high school administrators, parents, and teachers who are interested in developing guidelines for physics curriculum and instruction in their school(s). These guidelines reflect the goals of the AAPT, with an emphasis on instructional strategies and content appropriate for high school students. The professional preparation and the working condition of physics teachers significantly affect the quality of a high school physics program. Some factors that influence working conditions include administrative support; appropriate budgets; appropriate facilities for classroom instruction and laboratory activities; clearly articulated horizontal and vertical curriculum; instructional materials; and opportunities for professional affiliation and growth. While there is no complete definition of quality in describing a high school physics program, AAPT regards the following components to be essential for a strong physics program: (1) Administrators who understand the unique needs of physics teachers and physics courses and who encourage the professional affiliation and growth of teachers in both physics content and pedagogy; (2) Budget allocation that reflects the unique needs of a physics program; (3) Curriculum that offers physics at several levels to meet the varying needs of students (e.g., Standard Physics, Honors Physics, Advanced Placement Physics, etc.); (4) Instruction that provides opportunities for students to develop scientific knowledge and process skills through classroom demonstrations, discussion, inquiry, laboratory activities, research, special projects, testing, etc.; (5) Resources (e.g., facilities, instructional materials, laboratory equipment and supplies, references, technology, etc.); and (6) Teachers who are well prepared for teaching physics. Teachers with a strong content knowledge of physics and how physics integrates with other curricular content. Teachers with strong knowledge of instructional strategies. Teachers who receive and provide mentoring in pursuit of lifelong professional growth. This guide describes these six components in greater detail
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: Parents; Teachers; Administrators
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Association of Physics Teachers, College Park, MD.