AAPT Abstract Archive

Abstract Information

  Session: An Interactive Guide to the Paradigms in Physics Programs
  Paper Type: Panel
  Title: Bridging the Gap Between Lower-Division Mathematics and Middle-Division Physics
  Location: Broadway III/IV
  Time: 8:20AM - 10:20AM
  Author: Tevian Dray, Oregon State University
541-737-5159, tevian@math.oregonstate.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: How do physics students learn to be excellent problem solvers? Middle-division physics material, such as electrostatics, requires students to solve complicated problems involving many steps, yet lower-division mathematics courses typically emphasize the algorithmic solution of single-step problems. This presentation provides an overview of the methods used at OSU to bridge this gap, not only within the early paradigms courses, but also in prerequisite mathematics courses. These methods include an emphasis on geometric reasoning and the use of multiple representations. This work was supported in part by NSF grants DUE-9653250, DUE-0088901, DUE-0231032, DUE-0231194, and DUE-0618877.
  Footnotes: Sponsored by Juan Burciaga.

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