ASA Education and Public Outreach Activities
Many members of the ASA are involved in astronomy Education and Outreach at all levels of society, ranging from school visits to university education, media contacts and activities for the general public. The Education and Public Outreach Committee (EPOC) is a Chapter of the ASA providing a forum to discuss and promote these activities, whilst also initiating some of its own.
The ASA is a signatory to the Washington Charter that acknowledges the responsibility of astronomers to effectively communicate astronomy to the public for the benefit of all.
Membership of the ASA is open to anyone capable of contributing to the advancement of astronomy or a closely related field. Although most members are active professional astronomers and postgraduate students, the ASA also has the grade of Associate Member designed for Educators or distinguished amateur astronomers who have a demonstrated dedication to the advancement of astronomy or astronomy education.
The ASA Education and Public Outreach Committee has the following mission statement:
To advance the level of public awareness of the excitement of astronomy and of the international importance of Australian astronomy, while promoting the teaching of astronomy to students and the public.
One of the most obvious activities of the committee is the production of periodic Factsheets on topics of current astronomical interest. These may be found at the Astronomy Factsheets page of the Australian Astronomy web site. The committee also has a sheet on How to Become an Astronomer.
As a Chapter of the ASA, formal membership of the committee is restricted to ASA members, but EPOC seeks to ensure the broadest possible consultation with the educational and amateur communities. Any input is most welcome! The committee is always looking for new initiatives.
Enquiries should be directed to the EPOC Chair:
Dr Stephen Hughes
School of Physical & Chemical Sciences
Queensland University of Technology
GPO Box 2434, Brisbane QLD
Ph: 07 3138 2327
Fax: 07 3138 1521
Email: sw.hughes -@- qut.edu.au
Members of the media wishing to talk to an astronomer may wish to