Noted Physicist Dr. Robert C. Hilborn Appointed Program Head of the Department of Science/Mathematics Education

Dec. 19, 2007

Dr. Robert C. Hilborn, an award-winning physicist, will join The UT Dallas School of Natural Sciences & Mathematics as program head of the Department of Science/Mathematics Education effective Jan. 2.

Dr. Hilborn has an extensive background in science education.  He is a senior physics fellow for the American Association of Physics Teachers. 

He served as chair of the National Task Force on Undergraduate Physics, which is a joint effort to improve undergraduate physics by the American Physics Society, the American Association of Physics Teachers, the American Institute of Physics and the ExxonMobil Foundation.

“I am excited by the many opportunities available at UT Dallas for science and mathematics education both within the Science/Mathematics Education Department and in interactions with colleagues in other science, engineering, and mathematics departments,” Dr. Hilborn said. “I will also work to enhance the many science and mathematics education connections between UT Dallas and the broader Dallas community.”

“We have been very fortunate in attracting Bob Hilborn to UT Dallas,” said Dr. Myron B. Salamon, dean of the School of Natural Sciences & Mathematics. 

“He combines broad experience in science education with a distinguished research career — just the mix needed to guide our Department of Science/Mathematics Education to new levels of distinction,” he said.

Dr. Hilborn received a bachelor’s in physics from Lehigh University and a master and Ph.D. in physics from Harvard University.  He has held various scientific and academic appointments throughout his career — most recently science director at the Center for Science, Mathematics & Computer Education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln – as well as research professor of physics for the Department of Physics and Astronomy. 

He is a professor emeritus at Amherst College and wrote Chaos and Nonlinear Dynamics: An Introduction for Scientists and Engineers (Oxford University Press).  

Dr. Hilborn’s research interests include lasers, atomic and molecular spectroscopy, and nonlinear dynamic systems.  He has earned the American Physical Society prize for research in an undergraduate institution and the American Association of Physics Teachers’ Distinguished Service Citation. Most recently, in 2004, he became a Fellow of the American Physical Society.

Housed within the School of Natural Sciences & Mathematics, the Department of Science/Mathematics Education provides a unique opportunity for students to merge theory and practice. 

It offers advanced-degree programs for in-service teachers and conducts research on mathematics and science education at all levels, both informal and formal.

Building on fundamental coursework in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), students benefit from direct interaction with renowned experts and specialists in STEM fields, in science/mathematics education, as well as experts in other related schools and departments.  


Media contact: Meredith Dickenson, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2293, meredith.dickenson@utdallas.edu

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Dr. Robert C. Hilborn

Dr. Robert C. Hilborn

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