The theme of my comments is given in the title "Education in Optics - Challenges at Hand". The challenge that we all face is that of defining our field and designing the program content for each educational level. Simply put it is: What do we teach, to whom, for what purpose and to fill what need? I contend that we have incomplete information about all these items.
The subject of applied optics encompasses several topics that are of varying levels of interest to each worker in the field. There is the traditional field of optics that includes geometrical and physical optics as the basis for applications that have found wide use in industry. Although the techniques and methods applied to solving problems are quite up to date, this aspect of optics is often referred to as "Classical Optics". Modern optics implies the addition of topics based on lasers, fibers and other electro-optical devices that have entered the field in the past two or three decades. Optical physics is a step away from application, in that the properties of materials and the interaction of light with materials is of basic importance. Finally, engineering optics implies the comprehensive application of these principles to applications in industry.
This paper addresses the birth and evolution of new optics degree programs by using the development of optics undergraduate and M.S. degree programs at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (RHIT) as an example. It points out some unique steps that were taken in making this program successful.
Historically most training in optics was done at the graduate level. It was assumed that a basic grounding in physics or engineering was required and that the demand could be met by the established programs. Recently, however, with the emergence of an entire new optical technology, the training in optics has taken place at a number of different levels. As doctoral research encompassed devices and techniques that were the basis of this new technology, newly minted PhD's, including the author, joined the faculties in the usual fields of studies, but brought with them their enthusiasm for and knowledge of things optical. Going beyond the usual sophomore sequence on image formation and the standard single upper level course in geometrical and physical optics, these new faculty members, began to develop new courses and laboratories that brought some of their optics into the standard undergraduate curriculum. This paper is an attempt to assess the current range of optical training in programs within the traditional non-optics curricula. For the purpose of economy and focus, I have restricted this overview to those institutions that have award bachelor degrees in physics and electrical engineering. While there are other optics programs at other levels, the description and analysis of this selected group will, I think, provide a reasonable description of the type of training being done today. The assessment was carried out by means of a questionnaire sent to 30 schools that award bachelor degrees in physics and electrical engineering. Other data was found in the SPIE publication, "Optics in Education"1. In addition, Ken Cupery of Eastman Kodak made available to me his database, a substantial effort. I extracted those programs from Ken's database and attached the results of my own questionnaire to it. Of the 30 schools I queried I received responses from 21 of them. Two of these indicated that the program was no longer in business, so the results will be based on 19 responses. I am certain I have missed some programs. I apologize to anyone who was overlooked.
In this paper we review optics teaching at the postgraduate MSc level in the UK. We precede this with some personal comments based on 20 years teaching experience in the Applied Optics MSc Course at Imperial College, London. As one might expect much of the MSc teaching in the UK is based at centres of research in optics. There are other centres of research where "modern" optics is only taught in undergraduate (BSc) option courses.
Most people would say that "hindsight is 20-20." We in the optics business say that "hindsight is diffraction limited." What of course we really mean by this cliche is that looking back always seems to make things clearer. In fact it is interesting to think about why in our society we study history. One of the really tangible reasons is that by studying the history of the past we can better prepare for, and to some extent extrapolate, into the future. The intent of this paper is to take a look back through my own educational experiences, and then my industrial career in the optics field, with the goal of helping to define perhaps a little more clearly the structure and curricula of optics programs at BS and MS levels. One of the key areas to be addressed will be the distinction between training for a career versus training for a job.
Texas State Technical Institute-Waco (TSTI-WACO) was the first school in the United States to offer an Associate of Applied Science degree in Laser Electro-Optics Technology. The program began in September 1969 and has produced 1,827 graduates since inception. These graduates are readily adaptable to any area of the laser electro-optics industry. Areas of study include Optics, Electronics, Vacuum, Physics, Mathematics, and English with emphasis on Electro-Optics. Graduate placement is centered around research and development, life sciences and manufacturing in technical and engineering areas.
A survey was conducted to provide current information about the instructional optics laboratory courses at North American institutions offering bachelors and masters level optics programs. This paper gives the results of the survey and provides examples of instructional optics lab development activity. Problems facing the development of new instructional optics lab courses and refinement of existing instructional optics lab courses are discussed.
The thematic "meeting the optical talent needs of industry in Europe" can be looked at from different points of view. In the present report the industrial activities and the education in optics are summarized. My colleagues of the "Institut d'Optique" in Paris and the Imperial College in London will report on the curriculum in optics in Paris and London. The emphasis is more on the model we use at the University of Stuttgart. It is a parti-cular engineering curriculum forming engineers with a good optics background.
The economic miracle of the Republic of China on Taiwan has been mentioned. Factors of her economic success have been analyzed. Education is one of the main factors been attributed. Optics education which has been described is considered as the principal source of her success in the future toward tomorrow's economic miracle. The Institute of Optical Sciences of the National Central University was introduced.
Interaction of the industrial and academic world is of course a very old problem. The relative roles of each organization and the education of the next generation of scientists has long been debated. However, in the last ten years, there has been a substantial change in the interaction and the expectations of each group. The principal reason for these changes have to do with pure economics. As the cost of "big science" has increased. The need for more resources at universities to train students has increased and the need for highly trained students, who work as teams rather than as individual scientists, has become more important. No longer is corporate research done exclusively by the single scientist or engineer working in their laboratory for long periods of time to come up with the "Eureka" solution. At universities, the tenure system tends to require an individual to develop his or her own research topic. The cost of developing new topics has increased enormously. In this paper, the interaction of industry and the academic world are reviewed from the viewpoint of the academic individual. While I have had industrial experience, it was not as great as others who have written on the subject. The main topics are, 1) what drives the need for so much money in the university community, 2) assuming there is a need, what are the sources of those funds, 3) what role should American and foreign companies play in educating and sponsoring research at universities, 4) what should be the expectations of the university community and the industrial world, 5) what are possible formats for such an interaction, and finally, 6) what are the dangers to the universities and to the United States economy in the long run by such interactions.
We live in a visual world. Without vision, our perception of the environment would be severely limited. Visual stimuli are seen, recorded, and processed in many different ways. Astronomy, the process of imaging distant objects, and microscopy, the process of magnifying minute detail, are extensions of vision. Other extensions of vision include seeing things in different spectra, processing images for enhancement, making decisions automatically, and guiding and controlling sophisticated, complex industrial and military equipment. Optics is the study of this vision and its applications. Optics is a fascinating field that is growing rapidly. Students and practitioners of optics are attracted to the field for a variety of reasons. Hobbies such as photography, astronomy, and video recording, as well as academic pursuits, such as a high school physics or science project, may spawn an interest in optics; however, college training is the cornerstone of an optics career. Optics is part of physics, and as such, requires coursework in the areas of geometrical optics, physical optics, spectroscopy, electricity, magnetism, and solid state physics. In addition, mathematics is extremely important for optics design, analysis, and modeling. Optics is the successful synergism of these many disciplines. Many colleges and universities offer undergraduate and graduate optics curricula. Rochester University's Institute of Optics and the Optical Sciences Center of the University of Arizona are the most prestigious of these institutions. Further, such societies as the Optical Society of America (OSA) and the International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE) offer a wide variety of valuable short courses, tutorials, seminars, and papers at conferences that are held several times a year. Traditional optics fields, such as optometry, the examination of the eye and correction of its defects, or ophthalmology, the study of disease and treatment of the eye, are optics-oriented careers. Exciting new fields, such as optical communication, optical computing, Phase conjugation, adaptive optics, and holography, are expanding the scope of optics technologies. Development of sophisticated military EO systems presents one of the greatest opportunities and challenges in the optics world today.
This paper discusses research/industry interaction in application-oriented research groups specializing in the development of optoelectronic instruments and measurement methods. The research groups are working in Oulu, a city in Northern Finland, in an industrial environment consisting originally of pulp and paper industries together with metalworking and engineering industries. These established industrial areas are active in adopting new technologies for automation and process renewal. Furthermore, new emerging businesses are being generated through pilot installations and new product ideas created by research groups. The technologies considered are optical and infrared process analyzers, semiconductor laser-based dimension measurements and optoelectronic hybrid module fabrication. Examples of new products and enterprises employing these technologies are given. Additional skills and education especially in miniature optics and related constructions, are considered important for the future.
The situations of Optics Education in People's Republic of China are introduced. Included are the educational programs of Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Optical Engineering, te number of universities and institutes that offered optics degree programs, the research orientations for graduate students of Master's degrees in Optical Sciences and Optical Engineering, and requirements for admission to the M.S. program
The stake that those involved in optics education programs have in the optics industry is discussed, and suggestions are made regarding desired outcomes that will help ensure the survival of these programs. Suggestions are also made for actions that should be taken to attain the desired outcomes.
Industry has a vital and necessary role to play in the education of skilled optical scientists, engineers, and technicians. This role is not independent from that played by universities and other educational institutions; rather, it is one element of a continuous process, which is optimized when the interdependent roles that industry, academia, and government play are understood and coordinated in a strong partnership formed among the three groups. Examples from United Technologies are used to illustrate the contribution that corporations can make to the educational process.
This paper is a brief review of optical training in the industrial setting at Eastman Kodak Company. Along with a short historical review, discussion of the past, present and near future Kodak optical training offerings, the differences in industrial training philosophy are presented. A description of present facilities, plus introduction to Kodak's new training facilities conclude the paper.
During the spring of 1988 a survey was sent to 70 schools and 35 industries identified as having a particular interest in optics. The objectives of the survey were to determine the number of optics degrees being granted, the nature of the schools granting the degrees, and the demand for the graduates. The results indicate a rich diversity in optics education and a continuing high demand for students with optics degrees.
There is widespread need for scientists and engineers educated in optics. Universities are beginning to respond to this need by creating new programs in optics and including more optics education in the context of existing programs. This situation presents challenges in recruiting and retention of faculty. This paper examines issues relevant to this challenge.
A critical issue in optics education is the recruiting of sufficient numbers of students, at both undergraduate and graduate levels, to meet the growing demand for graduates. This paper explores the problem and suggests some possible approaches for more effective recruiting.
The field of optics is continuing an explosive growth period and is finding new applications every day. The need and demand for educated and trained optical engineers and scientists has caused a significant increase in the number of academic optics programs being offered. The objective of this paper is to put forth the issues and offer a possible course of action.
Are unlimited employment opportunities available for graduates of optic and electro-optic programs? There should be some controls to assure quality in training personnel in electro-optics. Does this control eliminate the opportunities for fresh, start-up programs? Is the present number of established programs sufficient for training all of industry's needs?
Barry and I are going to co-moderate and the first question posed to the panel is where do we go from here. Whether this is the first conference of its kind or not we're not entirely sure. There have been other conferences on education in this field in the past but this one certainly was a very successful one. I think everyone will agree to that when we showed up early the other morning and had a pretty good attendance and a lot of interest - that set the tone for the past few days and I heard a lot of favorable discussion. We've talked about curriculum, we've talked about training for the real world, academia-industry interaction, the critical issues facing optics education, so we've covered a lot of ground. It might be a good idea to let each one of our panel members take two or three minutes to give their views and then we will come back and address some of the very specific issues. Duncan, since you made the mistake of sitting on this side, why don't you go first.