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Physics education

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Full-Text Articles in Education

Analyzing The Mindsets And Behaviors Of Introductory Physics Students Through The Lens Of Intellectual Humility, Meagan Sundstrom May 2019

Analyzing The Mindsets And Behaviors Of Introductory Physics Students Through The Lens Of Intellectual Humility, Meagan Sundstrom

University Scholar Projects

Students often enter the physics classroom with intuitive conceptions drawn from real life experiences or former coursework, and may be hesitant or reluctant to re-evaluate these mindsets in favor of formally instructed knowledge. The goal of introductory physics courses is not only to teach and expose students to new content, but also to cultivate students’ ability to reason through and derive content knowledge through personal inquiry. This scientific process necessitates one’s abilities to be open-minded in terms of hearing evidence that contradicts his or her personal opinion, to be willing to discard any original misconceptions in the face of ...


Analyzing The Mindsets And Behaviors Of Introductory Physics Students Through The Lens Of Intellectual Humility, Meagan Sundstrom May 2019

Analyzing The Mindsets And Behaviors Of Introductory Physics Students Through The Lens Of Intellectual Humility, Meagan Sundstrom

Honors Scholar Theses

Students often enter the physics classroom with intuitive conceptions drawn from real life experiences or former coursework, and may be hesitant or reluctant to re-evaluate these mindsets in favor of formally instructed knowledge. The goal of introductory physics courses is not only to teach and expose students to new content, but also to cultivate students’ ability to reason through and derive content knowledge through personal inquiry. This scientific process necessitates one’s abilities to be open-minded in terms of hearing evidence that contradicts his or her personal opinion, to be willing to discard any original misconceptions in the face of ...


Exploring The Neural Mechanisms Of Physics Learning, Jessica E. Bartley Nov 2018

Exploring The Neural Mechanisms Of Physics Learning, Jessica E. Bartley

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation presents a series of neuroimaging investigations and achievements that strive to deepen and broaden our understanding of human problem solving and physics learning. Neuroscience conceives of dynamic relationships between behavior, experience, and brain structure and function, but how neural changes enable human learning across classroom instruction remains an open question. At the same time, physics is a challenging area of study in which introductory students regularly struggle to achieve success across university instruction. Research and initiatives in neuroeducation promise a new understanding into the interactions between biology and education, including the neural mechanisms of learning and development. These ...


“All Students Are Brilliant”: A Confession Of Injustice And A Call To Action, Amy D. Robertson, Leslie J. Atkins Elliott Dec 2017

“All Students Are Brilliant”: A Confession Of Injustice And A Call To Action, Amy D. Robertson, Leslie J. Atkins Elliott

Curriculum, Instruction, and Foundational Studies Faculty Publications and Presentations

The two of us (AR and LAE), in our teaching, research, and work with teachers, advocate for responsive teaching—an approach that seeks out and builds on the productive “seeds of science” in what our students say and do and assumes that “all students…are brilliant.” This pedagogical approach requires a commitment to listening to and intellectually empathizing with students’ scientific ideas.


Supporting Representation-Rich Problem-Solving In High School Physics, Lyrica L. Lucas Jul 2014

Supporting Representation-Rich Problem-Solving In High School Physics, Lyrica L. Lucas

Theses, Student Research, and Creative Activity: Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

The literature on physics education research (PER) promotes the use of multiple representations (such as pictures, diagrams, written explanations, and mathematical expressions) to enhance the problem-solving ability of students through instruction. The purpose of this study was to explore the use of a scaffolding strategy that involved the use of multiple representation tasks in problem-solving in a modeling physics class in high school. Another class with similar background was selected as a comparison group. In 12 in-depth problem-solving interviews of students drawn from the two classes, I investigated in detail how the students responded to the multiple representations tasks and ...


Using Open Datasets And Simulations In Laboratories, Jim Crumley Oct 2013

Using Open Datasets And Simulations In Laboratories, Jim Crumley

Physics Faculty Publications

While advances in instrumentation physics have made many areas more accessible to undergraduate physics laboratories, other areas are still beyond reach. Open data sets and simulations can open up some other frontiers of physics, such as Space Physics and Astronomy. In this talk, I will give an overview of some resources for open data and simulations, and then describe my experiences using these tools in both introductory and advanced labs in our curriculum.


Impulse-Momentum Diagrams, David Rosengrant Jan 2011

Impulse-Momentum Diagrams, David Rosengrant

Faculty Publications

Multiple representations are a valuable tool to help students learn and understand physics concepts. Furthermore, representations help students learn how to think and act like real scientists. These representations include: pictures, free‐body diagrams, energy bar charts, electrical circuits, and, more recently, computer simulations and animations. However, instructors have limited choices when they want to help their students understand impulse and momentum. One of the only available options is the impulse‐momentum bar chart. The bar charts can effectively show the magnitude of the momentum as well as help students understand conservation of momentum, but they do not easily show ...


Foundations And Frontiers Of Physics Education Research 2009, Michael J. Wittmann, Paula Heron, Rachel Scherr Dec 2010

Foundations And Frontiers Of Physics Education Research 2009, Michael J. Wittmann, Paula Heron, Rachel Scherr

University of Maine Office of Research Administration: Grant Reports

This project is a conference on the "Foundations and Frontiers of Physics Education Research," in which established and up-and-coming researchers attend a residential conference to further the work of the field. There are 60 participants, including senior graduate students, research scientists, junior, and tenured faculty. The conference consists of a series of plenary talks by leaders in the community; working groups of participants to address common problems in the field and present recommendations for future work; and targeted sessions in which research topics are explored in detail by participants. Ample free time is also included, allowing for informal discussions and ...


An Attempt To Get And Keep Women Involved In Physics, Jim Crumley, Kristen Nairn, Lynn Ziegler Oct 2010

An Attempt To Get And Keep Women Involved In Physics, Jim Crumley, Kristen Nairn, Lynn Ziegler

MapCores Faculty Publications

In this talk I will briefly review some of the obstacles to the full participation of women in the STEM disciplines. In order to increase the number of women in physics, computer science, and mathematics we have started a cohort-based program with curricular and scholarship components for women in these majors. I will present the results of our program so far and offer some advice based on our experiences.


Conceptual Development About Motion And Force In Elementary And Middle School Students, Dewey I. Dykstra, Dale R. Sweet May 2009

Conceptual Development About Motion And Force In Elementary And Middle School Students, Dewey I. Dykstra, Dale R. Sweet

Physics Faculty Publications and Presentations

Methods of physics education research were applied to find what kinds of changes in 4th, 6th, and 8th grade student understanding of motion can occur and at what age. Such findings are necessary for the physics community to effectively discharge its role in advising and assisting pre-college physics education. Prior to and after instruction the students were asked to carefully describe several demonstrated accelerated motions. Most pre-instruction descriptions were of the direction of motion only. After instruction, many more of the students gave descriptions of the motion as continuously changing. Student responses to the diagnostic and to the activity materials ...


Testing The Test: Item Response Curves And Test Quality, Gary A. Morris, Lee Branum-Martin, Nathan Harshman, Stephen D. Baxter, Eric Mazur, Suvendra Dutta, Taha Mzoughi, Veronica Mccauley May 2006

Testing The Test: Item Response Curves And Test Quality, Gary A. Morris, Lee Branum-Martin, Nathan Harshman, Stephen D. Baxter, Eric Mazur, Suvendra Dutta, Taha Mzoughi, Veronica Mccauley

Faculty Publications

We present a simple technique for evaluating multiple-choice questions and their answers beyond the usual measures of difficulty and the effectiveness of distractors. The technique involves the construction and qualitative consideration of item response curves and is based on item response theory from the field of education measurement. To demonstrate the technique, we apply item response curve analysis to three questions from the Force Concept Inventory. Item response curve analysis allows us to characterize qualitatively whether these questions are efficient, where efficient is defined in terms of the construction, performance, and discrimination of a question and its answer choices. This ...


(Sger) Theoretical Frameworks For Conducting Research In Physics Education, Randal R. Harrington Mar 2005

(Sger) Theoretical Frameworks For Conducting Research In Physics Education, Randal R. Harrington

University of Maine Office of Research Administration: Grant Reports

Physicists bring a unique perspective to education research. Recently, more and more physics departments are creating tenure-track positions for faculty whose primary research interest is in physics education. This research is task specific and consists of an integrated approach to examining student difficulties and designing instructional strategies and materials to address these difficulties. As a researcher in this field, the P.I. proposes on-site visits to work with the directors of two NSF sponsored education research and development projects. The objectives of these visits are twofold: (1) become more cognizant of current practices in the field of science education and ...