Emily Rice is an assistant professor at the City University of New York’s College of Staten Island, a resident research associate at the American Museum of Natural History, and co-PI of the BDNYC research group. She is also co-founder of the STARtorialist astronomy fashion blog and co-organizes Astronomy on Tap events in New York City.
Nate McCrady is an associate professor at the University of Montana and co-PI on the MINERVA exoplanet observatory.

We have published a suite of 40 lab-style activities covering the full range of Astro 101 topics. The McCrady and Rice Astronomy Labs are concept oriented, guiding students through investigations of fundamental concepts by a progression of demonstrations and questions. (This is intentionally different from traditional goal-oriented science labs, where students follow instructions to complete a tedious series of tasks and calculations, often resulting in frustrated students and bored instructors.) In our labs, students are given the opportunity to examine, interact, and experiment with phenomena that are integral to astronomy while developing their scientific process skills. We designed them for lab courses, but most of the activities are easily adaptable for use in lecture-style classes.
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Happy Friday, everyone! This post is intended to serve as both notification of an update and a call for further updates to the Diversity Programs section of the AstroBetter Wiki. While we have a decent size list already, we’d love to find out about more of the programs in place to further promote the participation of folks who identify with marginalized groups in science. The program doesn’t have to be astronomy specific, so long as it can benefit students interested in astronomy or astronomy-related fields.

One such program, is the Penn State STEM Open House, which has been added to our wiki. If we get enough programs like this, it may be enough to start a new section of non-astronomy specific programs within the wiki.

If you have something you want to contribute, please leave a link to the program’s website and a brief (1-2 sentence description) in the comments!

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Megan Potterbusch, a Library and Information Science graduate student at Simmons College, currently works at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Library and is one of the curators of the Astronomy Thesis Collection.

Now you can give your thesis or dissertation greater accessibility and visibility by publishing it online in the Astronomy Thesis Collection hosted on Zenodo.  This thematic, community-wide repository is curated by astronomy librarians and indexed by the NASA ADS.  Supported by CERN, OpenAire, and the European Commission, Zenodo benefits from highly reliable storage infrastructure and repository software to ensure that all files deposited into the repository will be preserved for the long-term.  While many theses are listed on ADS, the actual text is usually not available. The Astronomy Thesis Collection solves this problem by providing an easy way for authors to make the full text of their thesis openly available and discoverable.

For guidance on how to submit your thesis to the collection, check out the a summary of the guidelines below, the walkthrough on YouTube, and a detailed  blog post on the Galactic Gazette.

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While I’m sure there’s a lot of fascinating science coming out of the APS 2016 Meeting, the result that most caught my eye came out of the recently formed APS Ad-Hoc Committee on LGBT Issues. Specifically, C-LGBT released their first report LGBT Climate in Physics, which is available online. The C-LGBT website already linked above also features summaries of major findings, recommendations to the APS, and further resources and readings. Our “Diversity” Wiki Page has been updated with the link to this report.

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Claiming Papers And Finding People with ORCID

by Guest March 7, 2016

Alberto Accomazzi (@aaccomazzi) is the PI of the NASA Astrophysics Data System based at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.   If you have published a paper recently, you have probably come across the acronym ORCID at some point during the article submission process.  Or you may have seen references to ORCID in your organization’s scientific […]

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AAS Winter Meeting #AAS227

by Danny Barringer December 21, 2015

It’s that time of year again. The Winter meeting of the American Astronomical Society is nearly upon us. To make the most of your time at the meeting, we at AstroBetter would like to remind you of some resources available on the Wiki. First, the post that everyone attending a winter AAS meeting should read […]

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Physics GRE Scores of Prize Postdoctoral Fellows in Astronomy

by Guest December 14, 2015

This is a guest post by Emily Levesque, Rachel Bezanson, and Grant Tremblay. Emily is an Assistant Professor at the University of Washington, Rachel is a Hubble Fellow at the University of Arizona, and Grant is an Einstein Fellow at Yale. Their post below references this paper. Last week, AAS President Meg Urry issued an […]

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SkyWatch: A Real-time Feed for Astrophysical Transients

by Guest December 7, 2015

Dexter Jagula is a co-founder of SkyWatch, a company that is creating innovative tools in time domain astronomy. SkyWatch were the winners of the 2014 NASA International Space Apps Challenge, and have completed a term in the Google for Entrepreneurs program. When studying transients, capturing observations of such events is extremely time-sensitive. It’s not only […]

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Grad School Application Help

by Danny Barringer December 2, 2015

Dear undergraduate aspiring astronomer, are you tired of bashing your head against a table trying to figure out which schools to apply to, or what to say in your personal statements? Advisors of said undergraduates, are you tired of your students bashing their respective heads against your respective desks? Well, to both groups, we say […]

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Calculating and Visualizing Publication and Citation Metrics with ADS Bumblebee

by Guest October 21, 2015

This is a guest post by Edwin Henneken, IT Specialist at the Astrophysics Data System based at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. For many scientists, it’s all about the numbers and when it comes to evaluating each other, it’s no different. Project managers and administrators also want to be able to evaluate the impact of […]

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