Astronomy Research Seminar Expansion and Building a Community-of-Practice


  • Rachel Freed Institute for Student Astronomical Research


The astronomy research seminar has been growing by leaps and bounds over the past several years and is now offered in almost a dozen institutions from middle schools up through community college and undergraduate courses in four-year universities. In its spread it has gone through diversification in how it is taught to fit the needs of the new instructors, students and institutions, whether it’s as a three-day intensive workshop, eight-week fully online seminar or semester-long hybrid course. An important part of the growth, success and sustainability of an astronomy research seminar is having student teams working within a Communityof- Practice. Key to this, is building up that Community-of-Practice and helping students understand that they are important partners within the community. This paper presents brief descriptions of many of the seminar offshoot programs in the context of building a Community around student astronomical research.