Welcome Dr. Chuck Pearson!

Dr. Pearson is a new instructor in the Physics Department.  Come by and welcome him to our university!  I asked him to introduce himself below:


I’m Pearson. Yes, that’s all I go by.

I’m a teaching specialist in algebra-based physics. After getting my doctorate in biophysics from Ohio State and a year as a postdoc at UAB, I’ve spent a decade and a half as a professor of physics and chemistry at small schools in Georgia and Virginia, most recently at Virginia Intermont College in Bristol.  Even as I’ve taught coursework as diverse as physical chemistry, organic chemistry, astronomy, introductory cellular/molecular biology, and non-major science surveys, the algebra/trig-based physics sequence has been the one course I’ve consistently taught since 2000, and I’m glad to continue that work here at Tennessee Tech.

When I have been engaged in scientific work, it’s centered on two proteins, plastocyanin and cytochrome f, found in photosynthetic electron transport.  My doctoral work centered around a Brownian dynamics study of the interaction of those proteins, which I couldn’t have completed without a program called Macrodox – a product of Scott Northrup’s lab in the chemistry department here at Tech!  I’ve guided undergraduates through studies of the structures of those proteins found in the Protein Data Bank in my time as faculty.

Much of my current work has centered around open educational resources of various types, however.  I’m a promoter of the OpenStax College OER project and was a reviewer of the OpenStax College Physics text that was released in 2012.  I’ve done work with the learning management system Moodle and have worked to develop problem databases with the goal of releasing those databases as open resources in their own right, as well has having presented work on the tactics of assignment design with such learning management systems (most recently at the Appalachian College Association Summit in 2013). And I’ve supported institutions with early adoption, training and best practices development wherever I’ve worked.  It’s seriously nerdy, but it’s fun.

I’m married to Kristin, the best reference librarian ever.  Our two kids are 19 and 15. I am way too passionate about college football, was an original Major League Soccer supporter (you’ll never beat Columbus – OHIO!), and I play way too many old computer games (MULE Returns in particular, now available for iOS, coming soon for Android, and HIGHLY recommended). I will never hear enough good pop music (now playing: “Atonement” by Anberlin) and welcome your suggestions.  And I love, love, LOVE trivia, quiz bowl, Jeopardy!, TRASH – any knowledge game involving buzzers, really. If you like those games too, I will ALWAYS want to talk to you.

Oh, and my friend Pirkle had one more thing.


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