John C. Bean - Homepage

Science and Engineering classes are traditionally taught via math-based lectures calling upon hand-drawn static diagrams. The limitations of which were spectacularly evident when, in my very first UVA class, I tried to explain ever-changing microscopic devices driven by invisible fields. That led me to investigate the use of computer animations drawing upon intuitive / experiential science . . . which evolved into my "UVA Virtual Lab" science education website.

I then developed a class introducing undergraduates to my field: Nanoscience. And a few years later, another class introducing them to my passion: Sustainable Energy. But to adequately cover those subjects, I had to violate another academic tradition: that of considering a subject from the narrow perspective of a single academic department. Why? Because both nanoscience and sustainable energy are built upon a crazy / rich / confusing / exciting mishmash of fields. Explaining that mishmash led me to develop two more now widely viewed science education websites.

I am retiring from UVA next spring and one might expect my websites to retire with me. But I have too many things that I still want to learn and teach about via those websites. And, given that they attract over a million visitors a year, I have instead decided to create:

We Can Figure This

With its three still growing components:

"Virtual Lab" 3D animations explaining:

Lecture notes, movies and reference materials about:

Lecture notes, experiments, movies and reference materials introducing:

This combined post-UVA website is now up and running. Please join me there by clicking on one of its titles above.