K. Azalee Bostroem

Azalee is a UC Presidents Pre-Professoriate Fellow in the Physics Department at University of California, Davis. She is currently working on projects to characterize the massive stars that explode as hydrogen rich supernovae (Type II).
Beyond supernova research, Azalee volunteers as an instructor for the Software Carpentry Foundation. In this capacity, she organizes and teaches programming skills to researchers to allow them to work more efficiently to create reproducible work. She also organizes the Software Carpentry Workshop at the Winter meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) and is the PI of a grant through the American Institute of Physics to develop Data Carpentry lessons for the astronomical community which will be offered for the first time at the 2021 Winter AAS meeting.
Prior to returning to graduate school, Azalee worked for 5 years at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). At STScI, she coordinated the calibration pipeline development of the two spectrographs on the Hubble Space Telescope (HST): the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) and the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS).

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Affiliation – University of California, Davis Position – Graduate Student Github ID – abostroem Homepage – https://abostroem.wixsite.com/home Twitter – astro_az


Developing a Data Carpentry Curriculum for the Astronomical Community

As the astronomical community moves into an era of big data, the paradigm of data processing is changing. We are transitioning from local end-to-end data processing (from taking or simulating observations to publishing the data) to retrieving pre-processed large datasets through database queries. The growing importance of such transactions are evident with current projects such as Tess, Gaia, SDSS, ZTF, HST, and Illustris and will become a necessity to fully utilize the next generation of astronomical surveys, telescopes, and simulations.  Interaction with these databases and visualization of these complex datasets will be essential skills. However, these skills are not part of the standard astronomical curriculum and training, thus far, has been focused on tools specialized to individual projects. In this talk, I will discuss my work developing an open source Data Carpentry curriculum for Astronomy, that builds on the software skills taught in the Software Carpentry curriculum. I will highlight key aspects of this work that have made it a success thus far, including funding for lesson development, drawing on the existing infrastructure and personal resources of the Carpentries, building a core development team with experience in astronomy, education, and industry, and creating a broader network across the astronomical community that provided input at key points throughout the development process.