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Jose P. Mestre received a bachelor's degree and a Ph. D. (1979) in physics from the University of Massachusetts. Though trained in nuclear physics his interests migrated to questions of how people learn physics and science in general. While at the University of Massachusetts - Amherst he helped establish the Scientific Reasoning Research Institute. Since 2005 Dr. Mestre has held joint appointments both as a full professor in Physics and a full professor in Educational Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In addition, he is on the faculty of the Beckman Institute for Advanced Study and Technology at UIUC as a cognitive scientist.

Jose Mestre's questions center on the differences between expert and novice approaches to the organization and application of knowledge and problem solving approaches. He has also studied how we can use our growing understanding of how people learn in order to better design instruction using peer, active learning strategies. He has published extensively and by 2005 had co-authored or co-edited 17 books including Transfer of Learning From a Modern Multidisciplinary Perspective (2005), Anglo and Hispanic Students' Misconceptions in Mathematics (ERIC, 1989), and Linguistic and Cultural Influences on Learning Mathematics (1988).

image of Jose Mestre

Owned by Jose P. Mestre

Dr. Mestre was a member of the National Task Force for Undergraduate Physics (2000/04), a program designed to investigate characteristics of successful, sustaining undergraduate physics programs and what we could learn from these programs. This was the guiding body for the influential SPIN-UP reports - Strategic Programs in Undergraduate Physics: Project Report (AAPT, 2003) and Strategic Programs for Innovations in Undergraduate Physics at Two-Year Colleges: Best Practices of Physics Programs (AAPT, 2005). In addition, Jose Mestre was one of the 75 leaders in physics/physics education whose interview appears in the 75th anniversary booklet of the American Association of Physics Teachers, 75: Celebrating 75 Years of Excellence in Enhancing the Understanding and Appreciation of Physics Through Teaching (AAPT, 2006).

 

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