Noah Finkelstein Portrait
Professor • Fellow - Center for Stem Learning • Fellow - Physics Education Research Group

Office: DUAN F1021

Research Interests:

Noah Finkelstein is a Professor of Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder and conducts research is in physics education. He serves as a PI of the Physics Education Research (PER) group at Colorado and is also a co-Director Center for STEM Learning on campus, which has become one of eight national demonstration sites for the Association of American Universities’ (AAU) STEM Education Initiative. He serves as Co-Director of the national Network of STEM Education Centers.

Finkelstein’s research focuses on studying the conditions that support students’ interest and ability in physics – developing models of context. These research projects range from the specifics of student learning particular concepts, to the departmental and institutional scales of sustainable educational transformation.  His research has resulted in over 150 publications.

He is increasingly involved in education policy. In 2010, he testified before the US Congress on the state of STEM education at the undergraduate and graduate levels.  He serves on many national boards including chairing both the American Physical Society’s Committee on Education and PER Topical Group.  He serves on the Board of Trustees for the Higher Learning Commission, is a Technical Advisor to the AAU, sits on the National Academies’ Roundtable on STEM education, and very involved in the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities’ efforts in STEM education.  He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, and a Presidential Teaching Scholar and the inaugural Timmerhaus Teaching Ambassador for the University of Colorado system.

Selected Publications:

  1. J. Hoehn and N. Finkelstein, “Investigating the dynamics of ontological reasoning across contexts in quantum physics,” Physical Review: Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 15, 010124. (2019)
  2. S. Hyater-Adams, C. Fracchiolla, T. Williams, N. Finkelstein, K. Hinko, “Deconstructing black physics identity: Linking individual and social constructs using the critical physics identity framework,” Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 15, 020115, editors selection. (2019)
  3. M Dennin, A Feig,  N Finkelstein, A F Greenhoot, M Hildreth, A K. Leibovich, J D. Martin, M B. Moldwin. D K. O’Dowd, L A. Posey, Z D. Schultz, T L. Smith, E R. Miller, “Aligning Practice to Policies:  Changing the Culture to Recognize & Reward Teaching at Research Universities,” CBE Life-Sciences, 16(4). (2017)
  4. J. Corbo,  D. Reinholz,  M Dancy, S Deetz, and N Finkelstein, “Framework for transforming departmental culture to support educational innovation,” Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 12, 010113 (2016)
  5. B M. Zwickl, N Finkelstein, H. J. Lewandowski, Incorporating Learning Goals About Modeling into an Upper-Division Physics Laboratory Experiment Am J. Phys, in press. (2014).
  6. C. Henderson, A. Beach and N.D. Finkelstein, ““Facilitating Change in Undergraduate STEM Instructional Practices: An Analytic Review of the Literature” J. Research Science Teaching48 (8), 952-984 (2011).
  7. K. Hinko,  P Madigan,  E Miller,  and N.D. Finkelstein, “Characterizing pedagogical practices of university physics students in   informal learning environments,” Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 12, 010111
  8. A. Mikaye, L. Kost, N.D. Finkelstein, S. Pollock, G. Cohen, T. Ito, “Reducing the Gender Achievement Gap in College Science: A Classroom Study of Values Affirmation" Science  330(6008) pp. 1234-1237 (Nov 26, 2010)
  9. W.K. Adams, K.K. Perkins, M. Dubson, N.D. Finkelstein, and C.E. Wieman, “A new instrument for measuring student beliefs about physics and learning physics: the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey” Physical Review, Special Topics: Physics Education Research. 2,1,010101, 14 pgs, (2006).
  10. N.D. Finkelstein and S.J. Pollock, “Replicating and Understanding Successful Innovations: Implementing Tutorials in Introductory Physics" Physical Review, Spec Topics: Physics Education Rsrch, 1, 010101, (2005).