Michael C. Wittmann

Michael received his B.S. in physics from Duke University in 1993. His graduate work in physics took place at the University of Maryland. He received his M.S. degree in 1996 and his Ph.D. in 1998, while specializing in physics education research. From 1998 to the end of 2000, he was a post doctoral researcher at the University of Maryland. He began as assistant professor at the University of Maine on 1/1/1 and was promoted to associate professor in physics in 2007. In 2013, he was promoted to professor. From 2014-2016, he was Chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Michael has taught classes for non-science majors (Intuitive Quantum Physics), sophomore-level mechanics students (using the Intermediate Mechanics Tutorials), graduate students learning about physics education research, as well as courses on educational psychology and research methods in education. He has also taught teacher preparation courses, introductory physics classes, and upper-division classes in quantum physics for engineering students.

Presently, he is working on issues related to teachers’ knowledge of content, noticing of students’ ideas, and responsiveness in the classroom. Content physics topics for this work include acceleration, force, and various topics in energy. Past projects have included:

  • students’ understanding of waves, energy, quantum physics, coordinate systems, and integration;
  • researchers’ observations and models of their observations of student thinking (e.g., item design in surveys, methodological issues in video analysis), and
  • models of learning that include the human body (e.g., embodied cognition) and their connections to schema theories (e.g., a resources framework).

Much of this research takes place within the context of the Maine STEM Partnership within the Center for Research in STEM Education (RiSE Center).

Because multiple perspectives matter, click here for a different way of organizing the work Michael has done in the past.

Curriculum Vitae and Publications

Webpage at the Department of Physics and Astronomy

Recent Publications

For a list of Michael’s publications, please click here.

To see Michael’s Google Scholar page (auto-generated, often behind the times, and not perfect, but better than the rest), click here.