Felton, Norborn M. L.

Felton, Norborn M. L.

Date Updated



Natural Science

Academic Rank


Year Retired from SJSU


Educational Background

Columbia University, Sci. Ed., 1959 Ed.D.

Western Washington University, Phys. Sci., 1953 MA Ed.

Western Washington University, Sci. Ed., 1950 BA

Washington State University, Mech. Eng., 1948 BS

University of Washington, Chemistry, 1947 BS

Teaching Experience

San Jose State University, 1957-1986

Naval Res. Officers Trng. School, 1963-1972

Columbia Univ. Teachers College, 1953-1956

Bellingham High School (Physics), 1950-1953

Administrative and Professional Experience

Engineering Officer, U.S. Naval Reserve;

Logging Engineer;

Real Estate Manager & Owner;

Campground Owner.

Selected Publications

Co‑Editor, Science in the Elementary Classroom series, resource books for elementary school teachers; series of 8 publications; 1962.

Co‑Author: Felton, Catherine M. M. and Felton, Norborn M.L., 1978, "Mast for Meteorological Study in Salt Marshes, Buff of Amer. Meteor. Soc., 59(9):1166­1167.

AAAS Meeting Abstract: Digital Tidal Gage, AAAS Mtg., Pacific Division, June 3‑7, 1979.

Personal Commentary

Born 1922 in Portland, Oregon, but raised in Bellingham, Washington, the oldest son of a family of five children growing up in the Depression. Graduated from Bellingham High School. Major interests were science, athletics, and scouting with the B.S. of A. Started college at Western Washington University in 1941; joined the V‑12 Naval Officers' Training Program at the University of Washington in 1942; went to Midshipman's School at Cornell University with a specialization in steam engineering; finished the war as an Engineering Officer aboard a destroyer escort.

Completed undergraduate degrees in Chemistry and Mechanical Engineering by 1948, and began teaching high school physics at Bellingham High School. Married my first wife in 1949, beginning a family that eventually totaled three children: oldest son (D.V.M. in Veterinary Medicine), second son (Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering), and daughter (M.S. in Speech Pathology).

While completing a doctorate in Science Education at Columbia University, I began a teaching career at San Jose State University (1957‑1986). Taught a great variety of courses in the physical sciences, but regard major achievements to be the development and coordination of the graduate program leading to an M.A. in Natural Science, and the development and teaching of the graduate courses Research Methods in Natural Science and Science, Technology, and Society. During this period, amongst other activities, was Associate Dean of the School of Science for a semester; department chair of Natural Science Dept. for a year; taught extension courses in science; taught oceanography for the Naval Reserve Officers School; and served as board member of the Youth Science Institute (with terms as president) from 1958 to 1977. Also was a physical science instructor in Peace Corps training program at San Jose State University, 1965 and 1966.

Married my second wife in 1972. Ventured into real estate; sailed the Northwest Canadian and Alaskan waters for 10 summers; and began spending winters in Quartzsite, Arizona, where my wife and I now run (1992‑present) the B‑10 Campground. Enjoy exploring the Sonoran Desert by foot and four‑wheeled drive.

Date Completed: 6/96

Adapted from: Biographies of Retired Faculty San Jose State University 1997: A Project of the Emeritus Faculty Association of San Jose State University. San Jose, CA: The University, 1997.


Felton, Norborn M. L.