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Professional Development Workshops for AGU Scientists and Educators

Space Science and Astronomy Teaching Excellence Workshop for College Faculty
Saturday and Sunday, 21-22 May
Location: TBD

Conveners: Ed Prather and Tim Slater, both at the University of Arizona

This two-day, interactive teaching excellence workshop will focus on dilemas space science astronomy teachers face and will develop practical solutions for the troubling issues in curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Particular emphasis will be given to the problems associated with teaching college-level, nonscience majors, many of whom are apprehensive of science and mathematics courses in general. Participants will review the latest research about how students learn, define and set measurable student learning goals and objectives for astronomy course students, and explore how to create productive learning environments by using interactive lectures, peer instruction, engaging demonstrations, collaborative groups, and tutorials. Learning to write more effective multiple-choice tests and implement authentic assessment strategies, including portfolio assessment, performance tasks, and concept maps with the goal of constructing a syllabus and assignments that improve student achievement, will also be discussed. This workshop is being sponsored by the NASA JPL Navigator and Spitzer SIRTF EPO Programs, the AGU Space Physics and Aeronomy Section Education and Public Outreach Committee, and the National Science Foundation.

Preregistration is strongly encouraged, but not required. Participation is limited to 60. Registration in the workshop is free, but participants are responsible for their own travel and lodging expenses. It is strongly recommended that participants attend BOTH days of the workshop. To preregister, go to For additional information, please contact Tim Slater; Phone: +1.520.621.7096; E-mail:

Workshop on Exploring and Using Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer Data
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Sunday, 22 May
Location: Marriott Hotel

Conveners: Nancy Ritchey (NASA LaRC)

The NASA Langley Atmospheric Sciences Data Center (ASDC) is sponsoring a FREE Workshop on the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) on NASA's Terra satellite. MISR collects global images at nine along-track angles and four spectral bands within a 7-minute interval at every viewed point to map aerosols, clouds, and land surface covers. MISR Principal Investigator Dr. David J. Diner of JPL will present an overview of the experiment, and highlight some recent explorations of MISR data for Earth science research, including:

  1. unique results from the December 26, 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami
  2. discovery of an immense wintertime pool of pollution over Bihar, India
  3. mapping Greenland ice sheet surface roughness
  4. surface dewatering from the January 26, 2001 Earthquake in Gujarat, India
  5. relationship between surface vegetation bidirectional reflectance and canopy structure
  6. retrieving aerosol optical depth globally over all surface types
The Workshop is intended for new and experienced MISR data users. Participants will learn about the scientific applications, calibration, geometry and analyses of the MISR measurements. This Workshop will also focus on the available data products and tools (both MISR and GIS) to view and analyze the data, as well as how to obtain the products. Computers will be available for a hands-on experience.

On-line registration for the Workshop will be available until May 19, 2005. See for more information or to register.