Sunday, August 07, 2011

Phys 105

This fall we have 33 enrolled in Phys 105. This isn't quite a record, but it is within a few of our largest class. According to the declared degree programs and majors for these folks we have

  • 1 major pursuing a BA degree, 32 in the BS program.
  • 2 majors in the pre-physician assistant program.
  • 3 in the pre-med program.
  • 1 in pre-law
  • 1 in pre-professional secondary education
  • 8 are women
The pre-professional students in the program indicate that the word is getting out that physics is the best place to start such a career. We are trying a combination of making this explicit in the catalog and educating the orientation advisors.

Secondary education and the BA degree continues to appear in very small numbers. Nevertheless, they are still present. With a new effort starting this fall to encourage students into teaching, having only one on the list now is not indicative of the graduation rate down the road four years. The BA degree, in its current incarnation, will always be appealing to a small number of students.

Perhaps most encouraging is the presence of 8 women in the class (yeah!). This puts us at just shy of 1/4 of the class being female. This is a strong showing and is just a bit on the high side of the national norm.

Since Phys 105 meets on a Tuesday in a 75 minute time slot, we are going to start taking full advantage of this and schedule two faculty presentations in most class meetings. Thus, instead of a 50 minute presentation on one topic, we'll get two 35-minute discussions by two different people. This way, the entire faculty fits into the semester with room left over for pizza and demos.

Looking forward to the beginning of an exciting new year.