2023 Medal Winners | francais

The 2023 Allan Carswell Physics Educator Scholarship

is awarded to

Elijah Adams

"Receiving this scholarship empowers me to pursue my educational goals, ensuring that the path to knowledge is paved with opportunity rather than obstacles. This award represents a vote of confidence that bolsters my commitment to make the most of my educational journey." winner citation

The Canadian Association of Physicists (CAP) is pleased to announce that the 2023 Allan Carswell Physics Educator Scholarship is awarded to Elijah Adams, University of Calgary, in recognition of his excellent academic record and strong skills in communicating physics. He adopts a student-centered approach and has utilized this to explore inquiry-based learning and create high-quality physics course materials for hybrid learning. Elijah believes that "a compelling introduction to physics is crucial for students' continued interest in higher education" and that physics education can "cultivate unique problem-solving skills and enhance learning capabilities across all fields". announcement

At a young age, I started helping my peers to understand the material we were collectively learning. At the time, this pointed me towards education as a career, but I would not appreciate the benefit these interactions had on my peers learning and my own learning until much later.

Complexity science was the focus of my graduate studies. A classic example of complexity is the flocking behaviour of birds which cannot be explained by studying the behaviour of a single bird. The complex systems I have studied have been as unassuming as a sandpile and as daunting as the human brain, but the most intriguing complexity I have encountered was in the classroom. When I got the opportunity to teach a large group of students, I quickly realized that their learning was not impacted solely by what I taught. The personalized learning, I provided, and the interactions between students had a large effect on their understanding of the material.

It was in this moment that I discovered my own experience was not unique. It was through an understanding of physics that I was able to articulate and frame this realization. In support of the ethos of this scholarship, I believe that the societal impact of a physics education is immeasurable.

As a full-time student, the support of the Allan Carswell Physics Educator Award would not only allow me to fully immerse myself in my studies, but also enable me to provide a more impactful learning experience for the students in my practicum classroom. Through this scholarship, I will have peace of mind while engaging fully with my course-work and field experience to learn more lessons on how to be the best physics teacher through the incredible power of my own physics understanding. nominator citation

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