program_wb_i - page 105

July 26–30, 2014
Tuesday afternoon
low students who will take the MCAT a chance to prepare for the physical
science component. I will overview the curriculum and the pedagogical ap-
proaches taken in this first rendering, and then present assessment results
for this first (spring 2014) offering.
1:30-1:40 p.m. Physics Active Learning (PAL) Problems
in a Biological Context
Contributed – Nathan H. Frank, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL 61201-
Engaging students from biology or health pre-professional programs in
introductory physics courses presents a unique challenge. One way to
increase student engagement is to design physics active learning (PAL)
problems that show the connection between physics and biology. Often the
biology is more complicated than can be accommodated in an algebra-
based course, but simple models and demos can elucidate the physics of
biological systems. This talk will show several examples of these types of
problems such as the ATP Synthase molecule for rotational motion, virus
springs, and the human body. Strategies for finding biology contexts and
initial survey data showing positive student attitudes will also be presented.
1:40-1:50 p.m. A New, Ready-to-Use Axon Lab
Contributed – Joshua M. Dyer, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL 61201;
I have created a new physics lab that illustrates physics within the human
body. This lab demonstrates the dimensional aspects of resistance and
teaches principles of resistivity (and conductivity) and circuitry. The lab
also connects these physics concepts to biology curricula with axons and
electrical impulse in animals. Furthermore, it demonstrates the physical
cause of multiple sclerosis and asks students to examine ways that nature
might solve this problem through evolution. This presentation will outline
the design, procedure, and student analysis of this lab which is simple in
construction and can easily be added to any curriculum.
1:50-2 p.m. Two Examples on How to Make AC Circuits
Relevant to Pre-health and Life Science Students
Contributed – Ralf Widenhorn, Portland State University, SRTC, Portland, OR
Elliot Mylott, Justin Dunlap, Ellynne Kutschera, Portland State University
AC circuits are included in all standard introductory general physics
textbooks. However, while engineers taking this course may easily see the
relevance to their field, life science and pre-health students often struggle
to see how AC circuits are relevant to their future study. We will present
two lab activities that teach AC circuits in a biomedically relevant context.
A circuit lab on the electrocardiogram (EKG) shows how an EKG sensor
acts as a band pass filter and removes high and low frequency signals. Stu-
dents then observe how a RLC circuit can be used to build a simple band
pass filter. A second lab on biomedical impedance analysis (BIA) explores
the concepts of AC currents, AC voltages, phase shifts, phasor diagrams,
and impedance measurements. In this lab students can calculate a person’s
body composition using measurements of impedance and phase angle
from a small current injected into the human body. They can compare
these results to measurements of RC circuits that model the resistive and
capacitive characteristics of the human body.
2-2:10 p.m. Syllabus for Pre-medicine Physics
Contributed – Donald G. Franklin, Spelman College/Mercer University, Hamp-
ton, GA 30228;
Using OpenStax Physics you can design your course so your students
will realize that physics is important for the pre-med candidate. Start
with Chapter 32-Medical Applications of Nuclear Physics. Then Chapter
31-Radioactivity and Nuclear Physics. Then Chapter 30-Atomic Physics.
Now you have your student’s attention and can teach how Classical Physics
is used to prepare pre-medicine majors!
2:10-2:20 p.m. Designing a New IPLS Course: Goals,
Challenges and Early Evaluation*
Contributed – David P. Smith, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, De-
partment of Physics and Astronomy, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-0001; smithd4@
Alice D. Churukian, Duane L. Deardorff, Laurie E. McNeil, University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill
At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, we have embarked on a
mission to redesign our introductory physics course for life science majors.
Taking recommendations from recently published national reports and
the research of others, our team has set out to develop a course that better
suits the needs of the student population. Early development has included
significant discourse with faculty from the biology department, with em-
phasis placed on identifying critical cross-disciplinary skills and authentic
biological contexts. We will discuss the goals and objectives of this new
course and the challenges faced during the initial stages of development.
In addition, we will outline the early evaluation of our curricular materi-
als as a result of their implementation during the first summer session at
*This work has been supported in part by the National Science Foundation under
Grant No. DUE-1323008.
Session EC: Teachers in Residence
Location: STSS 412
Sponsor: Committee on Teacher Preparation
Date: Tuesday, July 29
Time: 1–2:40 p.m.
Presider: Jon Anderson
1-1:30 p.m. Using and Sustaining the Teacher-in-Resi-
dence: A Ten-year Report
Invited – Chance Hoellwarth, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Physics Department,
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407;
The Science Teacher-in-Residence (TIR) has played an important role in
producing more physics teachers at Cal Poly. The TIR position has been
continuously supported for the past 11 years. Initially the position was
made possible by a grant from PhysTEC, but the dean of the College of Sci-
ence and Mathematics has continued to support the position. Over the 11
years there have been four different TIRs, and on more than one occasion
there have been two TIRs on campus together. They have taught reformed
courses, introduction to science teaching courses for potential teachers, as
well as methods and education courses for credential candidates. They have
supervised student teachers, built relationships with local teachers and the
School of Education. This talk will discuss the impact the TIR has had on
recruitment of more science teachers, the different roles they have played
over time, and how the position has been internally sustained.
1:30-2 p.m. TIRs Working Outside the Box
Invited – Alma Robinson, Virginia Tech, Department of Physics, Blacksburg,
VA 24061;
Virginia Tech’s PhysTEC program has just completed its third and final
year of PhysTEC funding and the outlook for sustaining our PhysTEC
program is promising. We have started a Learning Assistant program,
developed a Physics Teaching and Learning course, expanded our outreach
program, created stronger ties to the School of Education, and reformed
some of our introductory physics courses to be more student-centered.
In addition to discussing the role and responsibilities of the Teacher in
Residence within these programs, this talk will also focus on the unique
situation given to our TIR as an instructor in the Physics Department,
a member of the undergraduate committee, and the adviser of our SPS.
Through these avenues, the TIR is able to seamlessly incorporate the goals
of PhysTEC throughout the physics department and increase awareness of
PhysTEC programs to both students and faculty.
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