James Stewart


Contact Information

Phone: (360) 650 3840
Office: CF 365
Email: jstewart@physics.wwu.edu


BA, BS, University of North Dakota
MS, PhD, University of New Mexico (1987)

Teaching Interests

I teach courses in both Physics and Science Education. I try to engage students in a conversation about the challenging ideas of physics with myself and each other. In Physics I teach mostly introductory courses where, even in large lectures, students work together to explain ideas and to solve problems.

I also have a strong interest in helping liberal arts majors see the importance of scientific understanding to address major problems facing the world in a course called Physics and Society.

I teach Matter and Energy in Physical Systems, a course for students who plan to become elementary and middle school teachers. It is particularly gratifying to see these students discover their ability to use scientific thinking to understand the world and to see people who thought they didn’t like science to get excited.

Research Interests

Recently I have worked with several physics majors on a project to help students in introductory physics courses learn to reflect on their own learning and to use those insights to help students learn how to learn. We have asked students periodically to write short reflective emails to me in which they analyze their thinking as they work to solve physics problems.


Page Updated 03.15.2013