This semester I will be teaching the Engineering Computation Lab for Aerospace undergraduate students. All the course material and news will be available on-the-fly on the website that I have designed for this course.
For comments and sharing, visit the post's permanent page: Engineering Computation Lab - Spring 2017
The year 2015 has a total of six supermoons. The full moon on September 28, 2015, was in particular most interesting, since it is apparently the closest supermoon of the year 2015 (only 356,896 kilometers or 221,754 miles away from the earth). What made it even more interesting, this September 28, 2015 full moon staged a total lunar eclipse, concluding a series of Blood Moon eclipses that initially started with the total lunar eclipse of April 15, 2014. Unfortunately, my attempts to capture the super lunar eclipse failed today due to partly cloudy sky of the city of Austin. Nevertheless, I managed to capture a time-lapse of the semi-super moon on the following night, as well as making a not-so-bad night-lapse of the Pennybacker Bridge on Texas loop 360 state Highway.
For comments and sharing, visit the post's permanent page: Sep 2015 Supermoon lunar eclipse and its side-products
This year on my birthday, coincident with the official day of my PhD degree award, I received a gift from the Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg and a second precious gift from the University of Texas, which I dedicated to the two angels who made it happen.
For comments and sharing, visit the post's permanent page: Celebrating the Happy Coincidence of Graduation Day and Birthday
I have always been fond of teaching all my life. It's a great feeling of responsibility and power when you go to the chalkboard in front of tens of students with brains like a white paper, ready to register whatever they are taught, permanently in their mind. and there comes the great responsibility on teacher. Depending on what you teach and how you teach, you can change not only the lives of your students but also generations to come. I can still very well remember those few teachers during elementary school and high school, who made me who I am today. and there are examples of great influential teachers in science too: Arnold Sommerfeld, John Archibald Wheeler. Almost the entire structure of modern physics (and even chemistry) was built by the students of these two physicists and their descendants.
As for myself, last semester I decided to take on a partial teaching duty for one last time in graduate school. Yesterday I received the students' evaluation. and a positive feedback I believe is the best reward a teacher could get :-)
- Amir was a badass! He knew his material and was extremely helpful in office hours. He explained things very clearly.
- Amir is awesome! I love him!
- 3 * Explained everything thoroughly (yes! that’s real me)
- Amir was enthusiastic about physics (Again, it’s me!)
- 2 * encouraged independent thinking
- made himself available for every student, very much appreciated
- 2 * very dedicated
- 2 * made learning fun
- 4 * amazing teacher
- I would have failed this course without his review sessions ( ! )
- best lectures I’ve had
- Amir is friendly and good at leading students to the correct solution rather than just telling them how to solve an in-class question. He makes sure all students who need his help get attention.
- always helpful during class and office hours.
- showed up in office hours, was not there. (likely making coffee in the IFS kitchen)
- too much fun in class is too distracting!
- 3 * no discussion sessions! (not my fault really!)
For comments and sharing, visit the post's permanent page: Last Teaching Assistantship of Graduate Life
– BEACON Researchers at Work: What Every Scientist Needs to Know
I recently wrote a guest blog post for the Bio-computational Evolution in Action Consortium (BEACON) on the importance of teaching, or at least introducing all STEM graduate students with cognitive sciences and cognitive flaws that can affect human mind and reasoning. The full post can found here. The following is a summary of the post:
In a world in which science and technological breakthroughs dominate all aspects of almost every individual human life, scientists and researchers are under an ever increasing pressure to cross and expand the borders of human knowledge. As new discoveries require higher levels of precision and reproducibility, excess workload and hyper-competitive work environments have made researchers more prone to human cognitive biases. A solution to this emerging problem is to introduce all graduate students in STEM fields with the limitations of human mind and scientific instruments and their potential role in false positive discoveries and misconduct of scientific research. I suggest that a full-semester course that covers relevant topics including those mandated by NSF as Responsible Conduct of Research should be developed and tailored for each individual STEM field of research and be offered as an integral core course of every graduate program across the world.
For comments and sharing, visit the post's permanent page: What Every Scientist Needs to Know