Education & Outreach


The Partnerships for Informal Science Education in the Community (PISEC) Program is the JILA Physics Frontier Center (PFC)’s main public-education outreach effort. This program recruits faculty, research associates, and university undergraduate and graduate students to teach inquiry-based science to children in grades K-8. Specifically, the PISEC program reaches out to children from underrepresented groups in physics, including low-income and ethnic minority backgrounds. Learn more about PISEC.

CU Wizards

For over three decades, the CU Wizards has entertained and informed children about the wonders of science. Each month, from September through June, CU Wizards presents a Saturday-morning interactive show. The CU Wizards shows, which are hosted by renowned University of Colorado professors (some of whom are JILA Fellows), are FREE, open to the public, and provide a perfect start to a fun-filled weekend. The shows are geared toward students in grades K–8 and their families, but all are welcome! Learn more about the CU Wizards Program.

Saturday Physics Series

The Saturday Physics Series consists of five to seven scheduled talks oriented toward adults and high school students. Lectures occur on specific Saturday afternoons throughout the school year. The lectures are hosted by CU physics professors, some of whom are JILA Fellows. The series is free, open to the public, and no reservations are required. Simply show up and enjoy the show! Learn more about the Saturday Physics Series.


Founded in 2002, PhET provides fun, interactive science simulations (sims) to help students learn science through curiosity and inquiry. Based on extensive education research, PhET’s sims are designed to engage to students through an intuitive, game-like environment where learning is catalyzed by exploration and discovery. The simulations are open source and free to all students and teachers. The JILA PFC was one of the original supporters of PhET interactive simulations, and we continue to endorse their use in physics education. Learn more about PhET.


The Physics Education Research (PER) Group at The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest research programs of physics education research in the nation. In the context of student learning, this group develops and studies the use of technology, social and contextual foundations, theoretical models, and successful education reforms.  This research group includes faculty, staff, and students from both the School of Education and Department of Physics, some of whom are JILA Fellows. Specifically, JILA has funded PER projects to transform undergraduate laboratory courses, develop assessments, and study student learning in laboratory classes. Learn more about PER.