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Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy Overview

The Living Physics Portal is an electronic publication of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) and is part of the ComPADRE network.

The public parts of the Living Physics Portal that do not require login may be used without providing any personal information.

An individual may create an account on the Living Physics Portal to contribute to the community, customize their site interaction, or take part in member-only features. Contributions made by a user to the Living Physics Portal are attributed to the user’s account profile. A user’s account profile may be shared with ComPADRE network editors. The Living Physics Portal and AAPT does not otherwise disclose, give, or transfer personally identifiable information to third parties without a user’s explicit permission unless required by law.

Aggregated usage information is collected for statistical purposes and may be used to help improve the site. For registered users who have not opted out of user activity logging, we log identifiable user activity to personalize their experience and improve the site. Details regarding user activity logging and the Portal’s use of cookies and analytics is described below.

Aggregate Personal Information Use

The Living Physics Portal uses first-party cookies, internal logs, and Google Analytics to track usage patterns in order to improve the site, diagnose problems, analyze trends, and understand the Portal’s impact on the communities it serves. For instance, we track increases in site usage after an event in order to assess the impact of the event. We also track search terms so that if users search for a synonym of a term we use, we can update our tagging system to return more relevant materials.

Aggregated information about usage patterns may be made available publicly, such as in program evaluation reports or publications. This aggregated information, such as the number of visitors to the Living Physics Portal, does not include personally identifiable information.

We do not provide personally identifiable information to Google Analytics.

Information visible to other Portal users

Registering on the Living Physics Portal requires being verified as an educator.

Registered users may contribute to the Living Physics Portal, edit their user profiles, and participate in discussions and community groups. Users’ contributions, profiles, and participation are visible to other registered users. Users who contribute to the Vetted Library or who manage working groups or events also have their profiles and Vetted Library contributions publicly visible. Other users may opt in to having their profiles and participation publicly visible. Your email address is never publicly visible. You may opt in to having your email address visible to registered users.

If you wish to participate, please remember that information disclosed is available for viewing by other members of this community. Please exercise caution when deciding to disclose any sensitive information on the Living Physics Portal. Never submit content if you do not have the authority to share that information publicly.

The Living Physics Portal also displays the names and institutions of co-authors who are not registered on the Portal, as entered by the submitting author of contributions. It is vital for the Portal to display this information to meet academic standards of attribution and citation. This information about non-registered co-authors will only be displayed or used in conjunction with materials on which they have contributed.

User Activity Logging

If you are a registered user, your actions on the Portal may be identifiably logged to personalize your experience. We may use these logs to share site activity back to you to improve your experience, for example by showing you materials you have recently viewed or downloaded or notifying you about updates to materials you have downloaded. We may also provide these logs to our project team members to troubleshoot problems or improve the site. You may opt out of user activity logging in your preferences.

Outside Links and Content

This site contains links to other sites. The Living Physics Portal is not responsible for the privacy practices or content of such websites. If you have concerns regarding a website we link to, we encourage you to contact us regarding your concerns.


Registered users may opt in to receive email updates about the Living Physics Portal. You can manage your email preferences from your profile page.

As a registered user, you will receive email notifications about your activity on the site and other users’ activity related to your contributions. You can opt out of email notifications for all activity except notifications that are in direct response to your actions on the site, such as contributing a resource, registering for an event or working group, or requesting a password change.

Registered users will also receive notifications about updates to the Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.


We use third-party software for collecting feedback on the Living Physics Portal. If you provide contact information when contacting the Living Physics Portal, that information will be used only to respond directly to your questions or comments, to investigate issues with the site, and/or to help improve the site.


A cookie is a small piece of information sent to your browser when you access a webpage. A session cookie is a line of text stored temporarily in your computer's memory. Because a session cookie is never saved, it is destroyed when you close your browser. The Living Physics Portal uses session cookies during user visits to apply user preferences and improve functionality. Certain Living Physics Portal applications require session cookies to function correctly. If you have session cookies disabled, you may not be able to use some features of our site. If you have user activity logging enabled in your preferences, there is also a session cookie for this function when you are logged in.

A persistent cookie is a more permanent line of text that is saved by your browser. The Living Physics Portal uses persistent cookies for the “remember me” feature and for determining whether a user has acknowledged the cookie usage notice. The Living Physics Portal uses Google Analytics and third party software for collecting user feedback and these services also use persistent cookies.


Research may be conducted on the usage of the site to help improve its appearance, performance, usability, and/or contribute to the knowledge base around how STEM educators find and use instructional resources as well as support one another in their instructional change efforts, in order to inform others creating resources for STEM educators. We do not track personally identifiable information in research studies without explicit permission.

When appropriate, such research projects will be approved by an Institutional Review Board governed by Title 45 Part 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

To date, no research projects that involve automated tracking of personally identifiable web activity have been conducted on the Living Physics Portal. Current research studies include usability testing interview studies, faculty interview studies, and research into ongoing community activities. Faculty participants and Portal users are given the opportunity to opt in or opt out of these specific research studies. If any research on the Living Physics Portal results in a publication, users of the website will be notified.

Children's Guidelines

The Living Physics Portal does not cater to visitors under 13 years old. We only store personally identifiable information for verified educators and our verification requirements preclude registration by children. If the Living Physics Portal learns that a user under the age of 13 has registered or provided personally identifiable information, that user's account will be deleted and their identifiable information will be removed from the database.


The Living Physics Portal has security measures in place to protect against the loss, misuse, or alteration of information under our control. If you have any questions about the security of our site, please contact us.

Account Deletion

To have your user account removed from our database, please contact us. Your account will be removed within one month of our verification of your request.

Legal Disclaimer

We may disclose personal information when required by law or in good-faith belief that such action is necessary in order to conform to the edicts of the law.

Notification of Changes

We reserve the right to change this policy. We will notify registered users of the Living Physics Portal if a material change will be made to our privacy policy.

Policy Feedback

If you have questions or concerns regarding this policy, please contact us.


This privacy policy went into effect June 10, 2022. View our previous privacy policy.