Eric Brewe

Professor of Physics and Science Education

Drexel University


Dr. Eric Brewe is a Professor in Physics and Science Education at Drexel University and is the Associate Dean for Graduate Education. His research into the teaching and learning of physics at the university level includes developing curriculum for the Modeling Instruction course, leading inquiries into the role of Modeling Instruction in promoting student learning, participation, retention & persistence, enhanced attitudes toward science and equity. This research has led to describing the role of participation in learning using primarily quantitative measures including the use of Network Analyses, and recently applications of machine learning and natural language processing. In addition to research on postsecondary physics, Dr. Brewe has been involved in preparing future physics teachers through Modeling Workshops, and as co-editor of the PhysTEC sponsored book, Recruiting and Educating Future Physics Teachers: Case Studies and Effective Practices. Dr. Brewe helped to found the American Physical Society’s Topical Group on Physics Education Research (GPER) and served as the founding Chair of GPER. He recently co-edited the Focused Collection on Gender in Physics published by Physical Review – Physics Education Research, served on the editorial board for Physical Review – PER and currently serves as Chair for the APS Forum on Education. Dr. Brewe was chosen as a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2019. Beginning in July 2023, Dr. Brewe has been an Associate Editor with Physical Review Physics Education Research .

Photo by Liz Waldie


  • Modeling Instruction
  • Social Network Analysis
  • Neural basis for physics learning


  • PhD in Physics Education Research, 2002

    Arizona State University

  • MS in Physics, 1998

    Arizona State University

  • BA in Physics, 1996

    DePauw University



Professor of Physics and Science Education

Drexel University

Sep 2022 – Present Philadelphia

Associate Professor of Physics and Science Education

Drexel University

Jan 2017 – Sep 2022 Philadelphia

Associate Professor Science Education / Associate Director STEM Transformation Institute

Florida International University

Aug 2007 – Dec 2016 Miami, FL

Assistant Professor of Physics

Hawaii Pacific University

Aug 2002 – Jul 2007 Kaneohe, HI

Recent Posts

Actions we can take

I feel a responsibility to address racial violence in my physics class.

Individual Meetings With Students

Since we've reached the halfway point in the quarter, I thought it wise to check in with the students

Problem Solving Workshops at a distance

My teaching agenda includes weekly problem solving workshops. The idea is that students should have time to work together on solving …

Standards Based Grading

My plan for this course has been to use standards based grading on weekly assignments. The basic theory of this practice is that we …



Modeling Instruction

The current state of Modeling Instruction at Drexel University.

Network Analysis Projects

Investigating the roles of social networks in physics learning and success.


This project explores changes to neurobiology after taking physics classes (Exploring the Neural Mechanisms of Physics Learning), in …

Recent & Upcoming Talks

Problems that don’t stay solved: Big questions in Physics Education Research

Drexel University Physics Department Colloquium

A toolkit for physics department advocacy (and survival) and its connection to EP3

Invited talk at APS April Meeting, 2020

The Roles of Engagement: Network Analysis in Physics Education Research

Rowan University Physics Department Colloquium

Modeling Instruction, student engagement, and neurobiological impacts

Rutgers University Physics Department Colloquium

Recent Publications

Quickly discover relevant content by filtering publications.

Characterizing active learning environments in physics using latent profile analysis

© 2022 authors. Published by the American Physical Society. The vast majority of research involving active learning pedagogies uses …

Characterizing active learning environments in physics using network analysis and classroom observations

This study uses social network analysis and the classroom observation protocol for undergraduate STEM (COPUS) to characterize six …

Transitioning to online instruction: Strong ties and anxiety

We surveyed a national sample of United States physics faculty about the COVID-19 transition to online learning. Most faculty had 1–2 …