Meeting of the Idaho-Utah Section American Association of Physics Teachers; Logan, Utah, March 23-24, 2007

The Idaho-Utah Section of the AAPT held its annual meeting, March 23-24, 2007, at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. James Coburn, section president elect, organized the meeting. Many thanks to James for a very successful event!

There were 47 attendees (those who paid the registration fee). These included 10 students, 5 high-school teachers (which actually includes a couple of junior high school teachers and an elementary school teacher), and 31 college and university faculty.


Friday evening, we began with a banquet held jointly with the Sigma Pi Sigma National Physics Honor Society for their induction ceremony.

Demo Share-a-thon

After the banquet, we gathered in the Eccles Science Learning Center for a physics demonstration program. The public was invited, and we drew a large crowd from the community.

Highlights from the share-a-thon:
Report from university newspaper
Carbon dioxide candle ladder–Steve Shropshire
Marshmallow spitwads–Steve Shropshire
Human Battery–James Coburn

Movie clips:
Movie: Gauss rifle–Zig Peacock and Adam Beehler
Movie: Methane bubbles–Steve Shropshire
Movie: Methane mamba–Steve Shropshire
Movie: Vortex cannon–James Coburn
Movie: Geyser–Steve Shropshire

Session Presentations

On Saturday, 26 presentations were given in three sessions. These included 6 students, 3 high-school teachers, and 17 college and university faculty.

Presentation Schedule

Business Meeting

We conducted our business meeting during lunch, which was provided for us by a generous donor.

Our section has not had a formal policy on section membership. Dues are included in the registration fee at the annual section meetings. We voted to officially designate at members everyone who registers at our annual section meetings. The membership would extend for five years from the date the registration fee is paid.

We held elections of section officers. The officers of our section are now constituted as follows:

  • President: James Coburn, Utah State University (former president elect, automatically succeeded our former president, Brian Pyper.)
  • President Elect: Gary Hunt, Boise State University (elected. He will organize our annual section meeting in 2008)
  • Vice President: Duane Merrell, Brigham Young University (elected. He will organize our annual section meeting in 2009)
  • Treasurer: Adam Beehler, University of Utah (elected)
  • Section Representive: Harold Stokes, Brigham Young University (continuing into his second of three-year term) 


At the close of the meeting, we gave away prizes, drawing names at random. Most of the prizes were “physics toys”. The grand prize was an all-expense paid trip to the national AAPT meeting in Greensboro, North Carolina, July 28-August 1, 2007. The donor providing this prize specified that it be awarded to a high-school teacher who has never attended a national AAPT meeting. The winner was Rachel Pryor, a student at Brigham Young University, who will be teaching high school beginning in the fall.

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