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2011 AAPT Summer Meeting
July 30-August 3, 2011
Omaha, Nebraska

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PST2A10:

Concept-Mapping Mechanics
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Tuesday, Aug.2
  Time: 6:00 PM -6:45 PM
  Author: Andrew Pawl, University of Wisconsin-Platteville
608-342-6160, pawla@uwplatt.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: One reason that introductory mechanics is a required course in many disciplines is that it has a very narrow focus but a very rich conceptual structure. Students of mechanics are expected to see the flexibility that is gained by developing many different descriptions for the same physical process (e.g. the motion of an object under the influence of gravity). Unfortunately, physics education research suggests that most students fail to appreciate this central aspect of the curriculum and instead view kinematics, momentum, and energy as completely separate ideas. Used properly, a concept map can be an ideal means of communicating the structure of physics to students. In this poster, we present a novel approach to designing a concept map for mechanics and indicate how student use of this tool can be tracked and studied.
  Footnotes: None
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