I’m a mathematical physicist doing research in science education. I develop digital learning environments in modern physics and study how abstract scientific concepts like black holes or four-dimensional spacetime can be visualized.
When I was 12 years old, I read Stephen Hawking’s ‘A Brief History of Time’ and I was immediately hooked. From then on, I decided I would study physics to understand the Universe. I didn’t end up solving all the mysteries of the cosmos though. So instead, I’ve made it my mission to inspire and educate the next generation of big thinkers.
My interests have always been broad, and I reckon this reflects in my educational pathway. I studied physics and mathematics at the University of Göttingen, Germany, and the University of Oslo, Norway. During that time, I worked as a teaching assistant in undergrad courses and did internships with science magazines.
I’ve always enjoyed playing with abstract ideas, but it was fun to share this knowledge with others as well. So, I enrolled in a distance study program on public relations management to become a better communicator. Now I combine all of these experiences in my PhD, which has brought me to the University of Western Australia in Perth and the Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne. I literally moved to the other end of the world in the name of science!
There are so many cool things about my job: I love to excite the inner scientist in others and it’s just plain fun to stretch everyone’s minds with concepts of modern physics. Plus, I really enjoy all the travelling that comes with working in academia.
My current research projects are pretty exciting: I look at challenges and opportunities of using virtual reality in science education. Virtual reality allows you to push the limits of reality and that’s just perfect if you want to experience the extreme physics of black holes or warped time. I’m also very close to submitting my PhD-thesis in which I studied how high school students wrap their minds around Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity.
Some fun facts about me: