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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

A conceptual course on lasers for general education
Author(s): Mark F. Masters

Paper Abstract

It is important to improve the technological skills and scientific understanding of students who are not pursuing scientific and technological degrees because they are indirectly asked to support science. To be supportive, they need to be able to evaluate scientific information as portrayed by the media. The difficulty is to find a topic which will stimulate and hold their interest in science. One such topic is LASERs. LASERs hold a fascination for students. LASERs are used in a wide array of technological devices and procedures. To understand LASERs requires an understanding of light and optics; of how light interacts with matter and with the structure of matter. Therefore, a course about LASERs can entice students who typically avoid science classes, and in particular physics classes, into taking a physics class, thereby giving us the opportunity to improve their understanding of science, their critical thinking skills and developing their appreciation of basic physics. Such a course can establish a sense of confidence in these students’ ability to understand.

Paper Details

Date Published: 5 June 2009
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 9666, 11th Education and Training in Optics and Photonics Conference, 96660U (5 June 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.2208053
Show Author Affiliations
Mark F. Masters, Indiana Univ.-Purdue Univ. Fort Wayne (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9666:
11th Education and Training in Optics and Photonics Conference
K. Alan Shore, Editor(s)

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