National Meeting Program Schedule

2010 Summer Meeting

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


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Sessions and Events w/Abstracts

Date: Monday, August 01

 

Total Number of Records Found: 55

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PST1:   

Poster Session I
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 9:30PM
  Author: TBA
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: None
  Footnotes: None
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PST1A01:   

A Novel Way to Measure the Distance to an Asteroid
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Richard D. Dietz, University of Northern Colorado
9703512950, rdietz@unco.edu
  Co-Author(s): Maurice I. Woods, James P McDonald, Hunter P Nolen, Travis W Riggle
  Abstract: We have successfully measured the distance between the Earth and a main belt asteroid, 298 Baptistina. We used remotely operated telescopes in New Mexico and Spain to take simultaneous images of the asteroid. The position of the asteroid with respect to the background stars was slightly different in the two images, and application of the method of parallax to the images enabled an accurate determination of the distance to the asteroid.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1A02:   

Robotic Telescope Observations and Active Learning Exercises in Introductory Astronomy
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Gintaras Duda, Creighton University
402-280-5730, gkduda@creighton.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jack Gabel
  Abstract: This poster will describe the current and future implementation of an NSF CCLI grant at Creighton University to rebuild and re-imagine the introductory astronomy curriculum. Traditional introductory lectures will be transformed through the addition of RF clickers and other innovations such as tutorial-style active learning exercises. The capstone to the project will be the purchase, installation, and operation of a robotic telescope capable of remote observations that will be made available to students and faculty at local and regional institutions as well as middle and secondary students in the region. This addition will greatly enhance Creighton astronomy lab courses, bringing a hands-on science experience to our curriculum that is currently lacking. The robotic telescope will allow the implementation of project-based learning with emphasis on advanced observational astronomy techniques and instrumentation including imagery, photometry, and spectral analysis at the introductory and advanced levels.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1A03:   

Deliberately Building Spectroscopy into the Intro Astronomy Course
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Richard Gelderman, Western Kentucky University
270 745 6203, gelderman@wku.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: We present and discuss a series of "minds-on" interactive student-centered exercises and activities built into an introductory astronomy course. The lessons are structured to help students improve their ability to recognize patterns and improve their ability to really see the details in front of them. Another goal is for students to realize there is "more than meets the eye" to learn how to discover "hidden" diagnostics, such as different sources of light their eyes see as white light. A curriculum that emphasizes spectroscopy also provides the opportunity to stress the story of the "Harvard Women," a tale that bridges gender gaps and often humanizes scientists in the eyes of non-science majors. Finally, with a solid foundation in spectroscopy, students are better prepared to understand exciting topics such as Hubble's law and the importance of primordial nucleosynthesis.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1A04:   

Automating Small Observatory Domes
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Brian K. Hubbard, University of West Georgia
678 839-4095, bhubbar1@my.westga.edu
  Co-Author(s): Robert Moore, Jr., Bob Powell
  Abstract: Many small observatories have computerized telescopes housed in manually operated domes. As the telescope automatically slews to another part of the sky, the operator must activate a motor to move the shutter of the dome to allow the light from the target object to enter the telescope. Retrofitting an observatory dome for automated tracking, the direction the telescope is pointed is likely to be too expensive for a smaller institution. Using an Arduin microcontroller, a compass module, and Xbee wireless communications, we were able to track an independently operated telescope without the use of bulky and expensive rotary encoders. This demonstration is a low-cost solution of consumer microcontrollers and accessories and is a viable wireless solution to observatory dome automation.
  Footnotes: Brian Hubbard is an undergraduate student at UWG. I, Bob Powell, am a member of AAPT and will be his sponsor. bpowell@westga.edu
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PST1A05:   

Effectiveness of Two Interactive Learning Techniques in Introductory Astronomy
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Jessica C. Lair, Eastern Kentucky University
859-622-4375, jessica.lair@eku.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jing Wang
  Abstract: As a part of the shift to active learning environments in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Eastern Kentucky University, we have implemented the use of a clicker system in all the introductory astronomy courses. The clickers were used in class on a daily basis to allow the students to actively participate in the lectures. We present pre- and post-test data from the solar system astronomy class utilizing the Astronomy Diagnostic Test (ADT) from the first semester of clicker use compared to previous semesters. We also present the differences in the ADT results between the laboratory and non-laboratory sections of the introductory astronomy course.
  Footnotes: Sponsored by Dr. Jing Wang at Eastern Kentucky University.
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PST1A06:   

Stellar Bar Codes
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Doug Lombardi, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
702-513-4415, lombar37@unlv.nevada.edu
  Co-Author(s): Donna Young, Pamela Perry
  Abstract: Astronomers classify stars based on the major components of their spectra. Much like bar-codes on store items, stellar spectra are each slightly different. The study of spectra provides scientists with important information about stars that is otherwise inaccessible, including composition, temperature, mass, luminosity, age, and evolutionary history. Spectroscopy is the study of starlight -- which is analyzed and plotted by intensity versus wavelength -- and visually represented as spectra. The stellar classification system of O,B,A,F,G,K,M is based upon spectral analysis. Spectra also determine the position of an object on the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram; each location on the diagram has a unique combination of magnitude and temperature, which gives information about the evolutionary stage of the star. This poster discusses an activity that uses real stellar spectra to help students learn about star properties and characteristics.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1A07:   

A 'Make and Take' Overnight Workshop at the SLL Observatory
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Steven J. Maier, Northwestern Oklahoma State University
580 327 8562, sjmaier@nwosu.edu
  Co-Author(s): Bobette Doerrie
  Abstract: In the summer of 2011, an overnight astronomy workshop was held at the Selman Living Laboratory (SLL) Observatory [1]. In operation since 2000, the SLL Observatory regularly hosts summer programs for public groups, led by NWOSU faculty and members of a local astronomy club, SAS [2]. Located in northwest Oklahoma, many state park tourists and wildlife and nature conservation enthusiasts frequent the facility. For our summer 2011 program, several Oklahoma science teachers were invited to take advantage of our facility's dark skies, 12" Meade and 10" Dobsonian telescopes. Participants also took away numerous free instructional materials purchased through funding provided by the AAPT Bauder Fund grant program [3]. This poster will present some of the highlights of the workshop and summarize our efforts in making astronomy more accessible to teachers in a region where astronomy is very rarely included as part of regular HS/MS science curricula.
  Footnotes: [1] www.nwosu.edu/sll-observatory [2] www.starcreek.org [3] www.aapt.org/Programs/grants/bauderfund.cfm
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PST1A08:   

Service Learning in Introductory Astronomy at Misericordia University
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Michael P. Orleski, Misericordia University
570-674-6251, morleski@misericordia.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: Misericordia University's Introduction to Astronomy course during the fall 2010 semester incorporated a service learning component. The students in a service learning course use course content in a service project. They then reflect on the service and how it affected their learning. The astronomy students held observations for two groups of local elementary school students. This poster provides details on service learning, the observation sessions, and a summary of comments made by the astronomy students regarding the service learning experience.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B01:   

What Does the Fukushima Disaster Mean for Nuclear Energy?
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Gordon J. Aubrecht, Ohio State University Marion
7407256250, aubrecht.1@osu.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: The 9.0 earthquake, tsunami and its consequences will influence global acceptance of nuclear energy. We examine some of these.
  Footnotes: If possible, in Energy and Environment session as well as the poster session.
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PST1B02:   

A Scientific Duty: Letters to the Editor
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Gordon J. Aubrecht, Ohio State University Marion
7407256250, aubrecht.1@osu.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: The author believes that letters to the editor of his local paper trying to explain what science is and how scientists work in response to letters demonstrating ignorance of those characteristics is a duty of all working scientists in view of the anti-scientific tidal wave sweeping America.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B03:   

Education Outreach Efforts of the Acoustical Society of America
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Wendy K. Adams, Acoustical Society of America
970-539-6154, wendy.adams@colorado.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: The Acoustical Society of America has recently been focusing effort on K-12 (note: the HS material works well for intro college students) outreach through a partnership with the Optical Society of America and AAPT/PTRAs (Physics Teaching Resource Agents). This year the acoustical society has created a website with activities for students and materials for teachers at http://exploresound.org. The material addresses the science of sound including physics, music, our ears, animal bioacoustics, architectural acoustics, underwater acoustics, speech and medical acoustics. We've also put together a poster series with guidebooks and are working on an activity kit that will be freely available to teachers. All materials are research based and tested with students. In this poster we will describe the type and breadth of material that's available and where to find it.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B04:   

Teaching and Intuitive Learning of Electronics Based Upon Projects
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Isabel Cárdenas, Grupo de Física / Gimnasio La Montaña
6761861, grupofisica@glm.edu.co
  Co-Author(s): Alejandra Corzo, Mauricio Mendivelso-Villaquirán
  Abstract: Based on intuitive learning of electronics and programming, with minimum teacher intervention, two 12-year-old girls can develop two physics lab interfases using open source hardware and software: distance ultrasound monitor and water level monitor. Issues about cognitive processes, building processes and teacher intervention are detailed.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B05:   

Cosmic Math Teacher Workshop
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Judy Vondruska, South Dakota State University
605-688-5859, Judy.Vondruska@sdstate.edu
  Co-Author(s): Larry Browning, Christine Larson
  Abstract: Cosmic Math is a curriculum project designed to use astronomy as a means of motivating students in learning geometry, algebra, trigonometry, Earth and physical science concepts in middle school and high school. The project begins with a week-long summer workshop on the campus of SDSU and continues with follow-up sessions during the fall and spring semesters. During the week's summer workshop, teams of teachers are involved in inquiry-based activities focused on building models (space and shape concepts), collecting and analyzing data (manipulation of quantities), and sharing ideas for implementation of activities into the classroom. The workshop is offered to physical science and mathematics teachers at both the middle and high school level with the intent of building local partnerships in teaching math skills. Teachers are encouraged to develop projects that cross between their classrooms so that students see the connections between science and math in each class.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B06:   

Math and Science Summer Institute for at Risk Students
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: James D. Dull, College of Idaho
208-861-5682, jdull@collegeofidaho.edu
  Co-Author(s): Robin A. Cruz, Melissa Ferro, Monica White, Kathryn Devine
  Abstract: The College of Idaho has collaborated with Syringa Middle School in Caldwell, Idaho, to promote the study of math and science in a population at high risk for dropping out of high school. Participants include the economically disadvantaged, rurally isolated, and traditionally under-represented students. The goal of the program is to engage these students with the potential for academic success by exposure to enrichment activities in science, engineering, and mathematics. Moreover, our program encourages these students to consider the importance of math and science in high school and promotes college as both a desirable and attainable goal through the participation of college student assistant role models.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B07:   

Opening up the Department: Day Camps and Workshops
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Timothy T. Grove
Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne
260-481-6157, grovet@ipfw.edu
  Co-Author(s): Mark F. Masters
  Abstract: We present information regarding two LaserFest events that happened at our home university (IPFW). Over the past two summers (2010 and 2011) we have had a day camp for high school age students and in 2010 we had a workshop for high school teachers. The day camps had several purposes: to teach about lasers as well as providing "fun" activities featuring lasers. The workshop was designed to have the teachers learn more about lasers and light so that they can incorporate them into their classes. We will present information regarding the activities we developed.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B08:   

Physics Outreach in Canada: A University-Industry-Government Collaboration
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Marina Milner-Bolotin
The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
1-604-822-4234, marina.milner-bolotin@ubc.ca
  Co-Author(s): Adriana Predoi-Cross, Li-Hong Xu, Shohini Ghose, Roby Austin
  Abstract: In Canada, education is part of a Provincial Mandate, thus every province has its own curricula in every school subject. All across the country, physical science is included as an important part of K-12 curricula. However, for the most part, elementary school teachers have very limited physical science knowledge. They are generalists and most of them have not taken physics beyond grade 11 and very few took introductory physics in college. This is especially troubling, since most of the students decide on their most and least favorite subjects in upper elementary school (grades 4-6). To combat this problem, the government, industry, and universities and colleges all across Canada have established a country-wide physics outreach effort. The poster will describe Canadian physics outreach activities in K-16 classrooms and their effectiveness.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1B09:   

Conceptual vs. Numeric Problem Performance on the NY Regents Physics Exam
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Luanna S. Gomez, SUNY Buffalo State College Physics
716 878 5639, gomezls@buffalostate.edu
  Co-Author(s): Dan L. MacIsaac, Kathleen A Falconer, Joe L Zawicki
  Abstract: We review and discuss student performance (1000 < N < 3000) on selected items from the NYS Regents Physics standardized physics examinations offerings in the past five years. Student difficulty on conceptual items, traditional problem-solving exercises, and more challenging non-traditional problems are analyzed and compared.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C01:   

Recruitment of High School STEM Teachers through the Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program at Buffalo State College
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Luanna Gomez, Buffalo State College
716-878-5639, gomezls@buffalostate.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jane Cushman, Catherine Lange, Daniel MacIsaac, David Wilson
  Abstract: In January 2011, the National Science Foundation Robert Noyce Scholarship Program awarded up to $750,000 to the NSF-Noyce New Math and Science Teacher Partnership of Western New York at SUNY-Buffalo State College. The partnership builds on existing Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) teacher preparation programs designed to address the shortage of math and physics teachers in New York's high needs schools by increasing the number of pre K-12 STEM teachers who are both certified and well-qualified. Noyce scholarships have been used to recruit and foster the development of new STEM teacher candidates through a variety of paths of entry into teaching. In return for receiving financial support, participants are committed to teach for two years in high needs districts for each year of scholarship support.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C02:   

Creating a Conceptual Understanding of the Wave Nature of Light
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Andrew D. Boggs, Eastern Kentucky University
859-248-6486, andrew_boggs4@mymai.eku.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jing Wang
  Abstract: The Department of Physics and Astronomy at Eastern Kentucky University offers an inquiry physics course for middle and elementary pre-service teachers. This course uses procedures produced by Lillian C. McDermott and the Physics Education Group at the University of Washington, specifically the textbook Physics by Inquiry. Over the past decade, we have found it is particularly helpful to address some common misconceptions students hold at this level. We have adapted several units to fit the requirements of the Kentucky Core Content. One requirement at the middle school level is student understanding of the wave nature of light, which is not addressed by McDermott's textbook. Using techniques parallel to McDermott and her group's work we developed an inquiry unit for introducing this topic to pre-service teachers. In this unit, we are using affordable items to provide tools for future educators to present this material to their students.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C03:   

Examining High School Physics Teachers' Use of Resources
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Matthew E. Hanselman, University of Northern Iowa
319-273-2420, bighans@uni.edu
  Co-Author(s): Lawrence T. Escalada, Jeffrey T Morgan, Emily M Stumpff
  Abstract: The Iowa Physics Teacher Instruction and Resource (IPTIR) program is a three-year professional development program offered at the University of Northern Iowa. IPTIR's aim is to introduce physics teachers to a research-based inquiry style of teaching. In addition, teachers may use program credit to work toward a physics teaching endorsement. Two curriculum packages, Physics Resources and Instructional Strategies for Motivating Students (PRISMS) Plus (1) and Modeling Instruction (2), are used to teach both content and pedagogy. Participants are also given the opportunity to borrow computers and laboratory equipment, and are provided with additional resources that they can use to complement their teaching or to help analyze different aspects of student performance. We discuss the provided resources and the extent to which program participants utilized each and viewed its effectiveness.
  Footnotes: Sponsored by Lawrence Escalada and Jeffrey Morgan 1. http://www.uni.edu/prisms/ 2. http://modeling.asu.edu/
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PST1C04:   

Using the RTOP to Gauge Implementation of IPTIR Program Goals
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Jeremy B. Hulshizer, University of Northern Iowa
319-273-2420, jeremy.hulshizer@gmail.com
  Co-Author(s): Lawrence T. Escalada, Jeffrey T Morgan
  Abstract: The Iowa Physics Teacher Instruction and Resources (IPTIR) program at the University of Northern Iowa trains physics teachers in research-based inquiry strategies; many out-of-field teachers also use the program to gain certification to teach physics. As part of their program activities, participants submit two video lessons each academic year, which the staff use to evaluate the degree to which participants are employing methods emphasized by the program. The Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol (1) is used to rate each submission. We discuss trends observed in examining the RTOP scores of program participants, as well as correlations between RTOP scores and student performance on various standardized conceptual assessments and other measures. 1. 1. Sawada, Daiwo, et al. "Measuring Reform Practices in Science and Mathematics Classrooms: The Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol," School Science and Mathematics 102(6), pp. 245-253.
  Footnotes: Sponsored by Lawrence Escalada and Jeffrey Morgan.
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PST1C05:   

Content, Process, Affect, and Physics Courses for Future Teachers
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Paul Hutchison, Grinnell College
(641) 269-4882, hutchiso@grinnell.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: A physics class must have some physics knowledge in it. This self-evident statement hides complexity worth examining. It is important to think about the role of physics knowledge and the role of students in relation to it. This study explores how different knowledge-student relationships interact with the multiple goals in physics courses aimed at pre-service elementary teachers, though the findings bear on any course for future teachers. I draw on analyses of existing curricula, scholarship from the science education and teacher education research communities, and data collected when I taught such courses. My study indicates different relationships between students and physics knowledge can create classroom environments that prize some goals over others. It's not clear this must necessarily be a zero-sum game, where the most important goal is identified and supported. I speculate how a physics course for teachers might be organized to simultaneously support multiple instructional goals.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C06:   

Science Education in Road Safety Education
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Marisa Michelini
Research Unit in Physics Education, University of Udine, Italy
0432558208, marisa.michelini@uniud.it
  Co-Author(s): Alessandra Mossenta, Alberto Stefanel, Laura Tamburini
  Abstract: Physics in context fulfills the training and motivation task for a basic science education as a citizenship right. We therefore faced the challenge of designing curriculum materials for primary and junior high school teachers for an action-research project aimed at road safety education. Starting from motion and relative motions, with a conceptual grounding of the role of the frame of reference, trajectory and kinematics vectors, in a bi- and tri-dimensional space of the real environment, and its two-dimensional representation on a road map, we proposed an analysis of the safety distance, based on human reaction time and dynamic parameters of the motion on the road, such as momentum and sliding and rolling friction. Cameras and motion sensors, tape timer and paper and pencil games or trials on the track accompanied the planning of teachers, who through microsteps of experimentation proposed a more detailed analysis of the physics of collisions and the involved energy, of the rigid body motion and of the conservation of angular momentum. We proposed the curriculum and the teacher training model as an example of educational innovation development based on inquiry learning regarding physics in context, made possible by institutional collaboration.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C07:   

Investigative Science Learning Environment in the Pre-Service Teacher Science Classroom
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Eric N. Rowley, Wright State University
859 462 4747, fizx_teacher@mac.com
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: Changes to the physics instruction for our pre-service middle level science teachers began in fall 2010. The core of these changes has been the Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE). This initial implementation of an ISLE-based curriculum provided an opportunity for qualitative investigation. Students were asked a complex question requiring multiple representations and higher order thinking on their end of the quarter exam. Approximately 75 student responses were analyzed for qualitative patterns. This poster will discuss the course, the question with student responses, and implications for further refinement of the use of ISLE in the pre-service teacher physics content courses.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C08:   

2011 New Faculty Conference for Two-Year Colleges Physics Instructors
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Scott F. Schultz, Delta College
989-686-9452, sfschult@delta.edu
  Co-Author(s): Todd Leif
  Abstract: In March of 2011 Butler Community College hosted the New Faculty Conference for Two-Year College Physics Instructors. Twenty-nine new physics instructors attended the four day conference. This poster will present data on the the demographics of the participants, the content covered and the evaluation of conference.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C09:   

Streamline to Mastery Teacher-Driven Professional Development
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Samson Sherman, Univ of Colorado - Boulder
720-261-3215, samson.sherman@colorado.edu
  Co-Author(s): Shelly Belleau, Susie Nicholson-Dykstra, Sara Severance, Emily Quinty
  Abstract: Streamline to Mastery is an NSF-funded learner-centered professional development program that seeks to capitalize on teachers' knowledge and experience to move newer physics teachers toward mastery. In this model, teacher participants choose their own goals and areas of growth and conduct research into their own teaching practices. Classroom research is conducted in close collaboration with pre-service teacher undergraduates, graduate researchers, and university faculty in a collaborative effort that benefits all partners in the pursuit of more effective and equitable K-12 physics education. Teachers will share their research findings, describe efforts to recruit and design professional development experiences for the next cohort of Streamline to Mastery teachers, and describe plans to scale this highly effective model of physics teacher education beyond the current funding structure.
  Footnotes: This research is partially funded by NSF grant #DUE 934921 and sponsored by Valerie Otero, University of Colorado, Boulder.
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PST1C10:   

Connecting Three Pivotal Concepts in K-12 Science State Standards and Maps of Conceptual Growth to Research in Physics Education
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Chandralekha Singh, University of Pittsburgh
412-624-9045, clsingh@pitt.edu
  Co-Author(s): Christian Schunn
  Abstract: We discuss three conceptual areas in physics that are particularly important targets for educational interventions in K-12 science. These conceptual areas are force and motion, conservation of energy, and geometrical optics, which were prominent in the U.S. national and four state standards that we examined. The four state standards that were analyzed to explore the extent to which the K-12 science standards differ in different states were selected to include states in different geographic regions and of different sizes. The three conceptual areas that were common to all the four state standards are conceptual building blocks for other science concepts covered in the K-12 curriculum. We discuss the nature of difficulties in these areas along with pointers toward approaches that have met with some success in each conceptual area.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C11:   

Comparing Conceptual Understanding of Physics Teachers and Students
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Emily M. Stumpff, University of Northern Iowa
319-273-2420, stumpffe@uni.edu
  Co-Author(s): Lawerence T. Escalada, Jeffrey T Morgan, Matthew E Hanselman
  Abstract: The University of Northern Iowa's IPTIR (Iowa Physics Teacher Instruction and Resources) program introduces high school physics teachers, most of whom are out-of-field, to inquiry-based approaches to physics teaching. Numerous activities help develop participants' skills and track their progress in learning the content and the pedagogy emphasized in this program. All participants and their students complete various conceptual exams as pre-tests and post-tests. Three tests common to both populations are the Force Concept Inventory (1), the Test of Understanding Graphs - Kinematics (2), and the Classroom Test of Scientific Reasoning (3). Because instructors as well as their students take these exams, we can compare the raw scores and gains of the instructor during summer workshops and the raw scores and gains of their pupils during the academic year. We present the relationships between the knowledge of the teacher, as measured by these tests, and the learning gains of their students.
  Footnotes: Sponsored by Lawerence Escalada and Jeffrey Morgan. 1. Hestenes, David, Wells, Malcolm, and Swackhammer, Gregg, ?Force concept inventory,? The Physics Teacher, 30(3), pp. 141-158. 2. Beichner, Robert J., ?Testing student interpretation of kinematics graphs,? American Journal of Physics, 62(8), pp. 750-762. 3. Lawson, Anton E., ?The development and validation of a classroom test of formal reasoning,? Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 15(1), pp. 11-24.
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PST1C12:   

From Learning Assistant to Physics Teacher: Perspectives from Minority Students
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Leanne M. Wells, Florida International University
305-348-9305, lwells@fiu.edu
  Co-Author(s): David Jones
  Abstract: Florida International University confers more bachelor and master degrees on Hispanic students than any other university in the country. It is also the main source of high school teachers for the country's fourth and sixth largest school districts. For the first time in a decade, FIU will graduate physics teachers who have discipline-specific pedagogical training and field experiences. We explore the impact of FIU's Learning Assistant (LA) program, transformation of the science education program, Introductory Physics course reform, and Teacher-in-Residence presence on student views on studying science, attitudes toward teaching and learning, and the evolution of career choices. This presentation will focus on: (1) what LAs from underrepresented groups bring to the table when studying physics and start to think about teaching as a career and (2) how these students view and use the programs and support structures as they pass through the program and as they begin teaching.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1C13:   

The Characteristics of a Thriving Secondary Physics Teacher Education Program
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Courtney W. Willis, University of Northern Colorado
351 2961, courtney.willis@unco.edu
  Co-Author(s): Cynthia Galovich, Matthew R Semak, Richard D Dietz
  Abstract: The physics department of the University of Northern Colorado (UNC) typically graduates two to four secondary physics teachers each year. Since 2005 the UNC physics department has graduated 16 physics majors who have become teachers, and at present we have eight additional undergraduates who are planning on secondary teaching as a career. These are rather high numbers for any size university. Most universities have difficulties attracting physics majors into secondary teaching, which has led to the national shortage of qualified physics teachers. The exceptional productivity of our bachelor's-only program has been recognized by the American Institute of Physics. We examine possible causes for our success from the perspectives of both our faculty and our graduates.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D01:   

The Double Compound Pendulum
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Joel C. Berlinghieri, The Citadel
843 953 6942, berlinghieri@citadel.edu
  Co-Author(s): Erik T. Pratt, Erik Rooman
  Abstract: The double compound pendulum consists of two arms usually of uniform mass per unit length. The upper arm is attached to a rigid pivot by a frictionless bearing. One end of the lower arm is attached to the bottom end of the upper arm by a frictionless bearing. The bearings in our case are PASCO rotation sensors with the lower sensor using a Bluetooth wireless connection. DataStudio is used to record the initial angles and angular velocities and the subsequent angles, angular velocities, and angular accelerations of both arms. The motion of the arms is very sensitive to the initial conditions and is often chaotic. There are ranges of initial settings in which the lower arm will eventually flip over the top of its pivot. The motion is compared to models through numerical solutions. This experiment* is performed as part of the junior-level classical mechanics and numerical methods courses.
  Footnotes: *Physics Laboratory Manual for Scientists and Engineers, Joel C. Berlinghieri, Tavenner Publishing Co., 2011, ISBN 978-1-930208-35-3
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PST1D02:   

Watching and Listening to the Coefficient of Restitution
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Marco Ciocca, Eastern Kentucky University
859-622-6172, marco.ciocca@eku.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jing Wang
  Abstract: Video analysis is a research-proven effective tool in physics teaching. Students learning physics through video analysis projects show better data interpretation skills and gain deeper understanding on certain topics.[1,2] Most studies of video analysis have been focused on projects for introductory-level physics concepts. The benefit of using video analysis in upper-level physics courses is often neglected. To fill this gap, we used video analysis techniques to measure the coefficient of restitution of a ball. The results obtained compared favorably with more standard techniques, with the advantage of immediate visualization. [1] Beichner, R. J. (1996) "The impact of video motion analysis on kinematics graph interpretation skills." American Journal of Physics 64(10), 1272-1277. [2] Laws, P. and Pfister, H. (1998) "Using digital video analysis in introductory mechanics projects," The Physics Teacher 36(5), 282-287.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D03:   

A Hands-On Introduction to Quantum Mechanics for Sophomore Physics Majors
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: David P. Jackson, Dickinson College
717-245-1073, jacksond@dickinson.edu
  Co-Author(s): Brett J. Pearson
  Abstract: The Physics Department at Dickinson College has re-designed its curriculum for physics majors to take advantage of recently developed single-photon experiments in quantum mechanics.* The ultimate goal is to bring students face to face with some of the fascinating and subtle features of quantum mechanics in a hands-on setting. This is mainly accomplished in a sophomore-level course titled "Introduction to Relativistic and Quantum Physics." Experiments include the behavior of a photon at a beam splitter--it "must" go one way or the other--and the behavior of a photon at a Mach-Zehnder Interferometer--it "must" go both ways. This poster will describe our curriculum changes and discuss some of the successes and difficulties we have experienced.
  Footnotes: *This work was supported by NSF grant DUE-0737230.
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PST1D04:   

Wind Power Experiments Using an Electric Leaf Blower
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Stephen Luzader,
301-689-1976, sluzader@frostburg.edu
  Co-Author(s): Hang Deng-Luzader, Samuel Akyea
  Abstract: Some simple experiments demonstrating basic principles of wind turbine operation can be carried out using an electric leaf blower in vacuum configuration as a wind source. A small DC hobby motor fitted with a model airplane propeller or a small fan blade serves as the generator, which is placed in front of the air intake of the leaf blower. The equipment required for quantitative experiments include a resistance box and voltmeter, some means of controlling the air speed, and an instrument to measure the air speed. Most departments will have resistors and voltmeters and probably a Variac for controlling the blower speed. The only special piece of equipment we purchased was a hot-wire anemometer to measure wind speed. Experiments suitable for a wide range of students will be described.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D05:   

A Systematic Error in a Boyle's Law Experiment
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Richard P. McCall, St. Louis College of Pharmacy
314-446-8473, rmccall@stlcop.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: Systematic errors can cause measurements to deviate from the actual value of the quantity being measured. Using a meterstick that is not marked off correctly, using a balance to measure mass that has not been properly zeroed, or misinterpreting the range of a voltmeter are all examples. A simple Boyle's law experiment seeks to show that the pressure of a gas multiplied by its volume is a constant. A first attempt results in an experimental difference of about 5%. However, when the proper volume is taken into account, the difference reduces to about 1%. A discussion of how to measure the correct volume by indirect methods is presented.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D06:   

Spring, String, and Inclined Plane: A Lab on Newton's Laws
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Carl E. Mungan, United States Naval Academy
410-293-6680, mungan@usna.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: Students in an introductory physics course are typically presented with homework problems and lab work that separately involve strings (e.g. an Atwood's machine), inclined planes (e.g. conversion of gravitational to kinetic energy), and springs (e.g. oscillations of a mass hanging from a spring). But to fully develop student understanding of Newton's laws, it is important to combine elements to build up more complex situations. To this end, I propose tying together two blocks on an inclined plane and then attaching the upper block to a spring whose other end is fixed. Students can first be challenged to draw relevant free-body diagrams, initially ignoring drag. Next, if this setup is assembled in lab, even using low-friction motion carts instead of blocks, it is immediately observed that damping cannot be neglected. However, simple speed-independent friction fits the measurements well, so that analysis of the situation remains within student capabilities.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D07:   

Mathematical Modeling-based Engineering Education through an Axiomatic Design Approach
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Rafael Gutierrez, University of Texas at El Paso
(915) 747 6901, seflores@uacj.mx
  Co-Author(s): Sergio Flores, Fernando Tovia, Mariano Olmos, Sergio Miguel Terrazas
  Abstract: Many engineering students have difficulty resolving real life problems through traditional instruction. Most of them do not develop or apply the fundamental science-math knowledge to construct a functional understanding. A mathematical modeling learning approach named Axiomatic Design represents a didactical alternative to achieve not only the scientific skills but also the ability toward the design, creativity, and innovate of engineering processes based on an adaptive expertise for learning using mathematics and physics principles. We present an axiomatic design application in the context of a block stacking situation and the corresponding expected learning outcomes.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D07:   

You Can Build a Scanning Tunneling Microscope for Your Classroom!
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Mark W. Plano Clark, Doane College
402-826-8621, mark.planoclark@doane.edu
  Co-Author(s): Paul Garcia, Axel Enders
  Abstract: Two years ago the authors proposed to produce a low-cost room-temperature atmospheric-pressure scanning tunneling microscope (STM) with atomic resolution -- to be accessible to high school and college teaching labs. Project costs are currently less than $200. The techniques to produce the STM require access to a basic machine shop and materials, and some skill in producing low-voltage (<20 V) amplifiers to drive the piezos. Each of the components make great student projects. Flat piezoceramic sheets are cut and then formed into rectangular structures to provide the x, y, and z scanning motions. We are using the open-source Gnome X Scanning Microscopy (GXSM) software and a commercial digital signal processing board but hope to produce a much cheaper digital signal processing board to further lower the cost.
  Footnotes: Paul Garcia is currently an engineering student at Washington University, St. Louis.
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PST1D08:   

Hubbert Peak and Radioactive Decay Activities Using Dice
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Mark E. Rupright, Birmingham-Southern College
205-226-4875, mruprigh@bsc.edu
  Co-Author(s): Tyler Dart
  Abstract: We will outline two laboratory activities for an introductory "Energy and the Environment" course that use dice to model random behavior. In the first, we model the growth, peak, and decline in production of a resource to produce a Hubbert-type curve. In the second, we relate the random decay of individual nuclei to the exponential decay of a radioactive sample. We also show how to extend the latter activity to more complex cases in which parent/daughter isotopes have different decay rates.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D09:   

Development, Implementation, and Assessment of Ultrasound Physics Laboratory
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Karen A. Williams, East Central University
580-421-7331, kwillims@mac.com
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: This poster will explain how an advanced laboratory, PHYS 3611 Ultrasound Physics, was developed, implemented, and assessed at ECU. Details about each laboratory exercise will be shown. The course was created to provide more laboratory experience for our medical physics majors in response to surveys done to assess the physics major. To my surprise, the course as taught so far seems to be populated by students in medical physics, physical therapy, and premedical students. This might be a lab that would attract students in your program as well. Several students have been so interested in the ultrasound lab that they have gone one step further and done research projects in the field.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1D10:   

What is the Relevance of Physics Education Research to the Advanced Lab?
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Benjamin M. Zwickl, University of Colorado at Boulder
303-492-6956, benjamin.zwickl@colorado.edu
  Co-Author(s): Noah D. Finkelstein, Heather J Lewandowski
  Abstract: The University of Colorado Boulder is in the early stages of a 2.5-year research-based redesign of our upper-division physics lab courses. There has been a nationwide resurgence of interest in advanced physics labs among instructors and faculty, but the PER community to date has focused on introductory and lecture-format classes. Little research has been conducted on these uniquely sophisticated and resource-rich learning environments in terms of goals, measurements of learning, and outcomes of modification. We are applying the existing research-base and methods of PER as a tool to make our labs better with the dual purpose of finding generalizable lessons about effective instruction in advanced lab courses. We will report preliminary outcomes that include our process of modification, learning goals, assessment frameworks, and a revised lab example.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1E01:   

Mentoring Graduate Students at a Hispanic Serving Institution
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Eric Brewe, Florida International University
305-348-3507, eric.brewe@fiu.edu
  Co-Author(s): Laird H. Kramer, Renee Michelle Goertzen
  Abstract: This poster describes the approaches we have taken to building a community of graduate students in Physics Education Research at Florida International University. Building a research group in the context of a Hispanic Serving Institution has unique features including an imperative to consider inclusive models of education. The current group of students includes students from the physics department and the College of Education. The primary approach to mentoring these students from diverse backgrounds has been to establish a learning community. We describe efforts toward building the learning community.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1E02:   

Temperature Changes in Food: An Upper-Level Project
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Michael Burns-Kaurin, Spelman College
404-270-5849, mburns-k@spelman.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: In the Advanced Experiments, Theory, and Modeling capstone course for physics majors at Spelman College, students work on projects that bring together principles and techniques from the intermediate-level theory and laboratory courses. In one of these projects, students measure the temperature change of a piece of food as a function of time and position as they heat or cool the food. They also work through the theory of the heat equation by looking at successively more complex situations to arrive at the full heat equation, solve the equation analytically, and create a computer simulation with parameters chosen to describe their data.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1E03:   

Socratic Dialogs and Clicker Use in Upper-Division Mechanics Courses
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Lincoln D. Carr, Colorado School of Mines
303-273-3759, lcarr@mines.edu
  Co-Author(s): Vincent H. Kuo, Patrick B. Kohl, Noah Finkelstein
  Abstract: The general problem of effectively using interactive engagement in non-introductory physics courses remains open. We present a three-year study comparing different approaches to lecturing in an intermediate mechanics course at the Colorado School of Mines. In the first two years, the lectures were modified to include Socratic dialogs between the instructor and students. In the third year, the instructor used clickers and Peer Instruction. All other course materials were nearly identical to an established traditional lecture course. We present results from exams, course evaluations, the CLASS attitude survey, and a new conceptual survey. We observe little change in student exam performance as lecture techniques varied, though students consistently stated clickers were "the best part of the course" from which they "learned the most." Indeed, when using clickers in this course, students were considerably more likely to become engaged than students in CSM introductory courses using the same methods.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1E04:   

Teaching Creativity and Innovation to Physicists Using Tablet PCs
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Patrick B. Kohl, Colorado School of Mines
303-384-2303, pkohl@mines.edu
  Co-Author(s): Vincent H. Kuo, Frank Kowalski, Susan Kowalksi
  Abstract: As the rest of the world catches up to the U.S. in industrial output and technological sophistication, our continued economic prosperity will depend on strengthening our historical success in generating new ideas. While there are limited efforts to foster creativity and innovation through formal and informal instruction in the business world, few efforts exist in science or engineering education. To address this, the Colorado School of Mines has recently created a dedicated Tablet PC classroom where we hold an elective physics course for the purpose of improving creativity in our students. In this poster, we report on the structure of the course and the technologies used. The latter include pedagogical implementations of InkSurvey, a free web-based software package that enables detailed, real-time interactions with the instructor. We assess student progress via the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, and discuss early work towards developing a physics-specific instrument for measuring creativity.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1E05:   

Stages of Participation as Stages of Expertise
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Idaykis Rodriguez, Florida International University
305 348-4881, irodr020@fiu.edu
  Co-Author(s): Eric Brewe, Laird H Kramer
  Abstract: Expertise research in physics has focused heavily on differences between experts and novices. In an effort to extend the scope of expertise research, we are engaged in an ongoing study of the development of expertise in a physics research group. To capture the features of the development of expertise in physics, we present an ethnographic, qualitative study within a physics research group. We utilize video recordings of the physics research group's weekly research meeting and guided interviews with each of eight participants in the group. These data are analyzed using Lave and Wenger's [2] perspective of learning as legitimate peripheral participation within a community of practice. We present data from this study to characterize stages of expertise and posit a trajectory novices take toward expertise.
  Footnotes: [1] Supported by NSF Award # PHY-0802184 [2]Lave J., & Wegner, E. (1991). Situated learning: Legitimate peripheral participation. New York: Cambridge University Press.
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PST1E06:   

The Third Semester - Advantages of a Dedicated Waves/Fourier Course
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: David H Kaplan, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
618 650 2479, dkaplan@siue.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: Keeping physics majors is a national priority today. Yet, many are currently lost in a transition for which they are not adequately prepared - that from first-year physics, for which the main mathematical and physical prerequisites are well defined, to modern physics and other intermediate and upper-division courses in which students are expected, with rapid on-the-fly "coverage," to quickly become proficient with properties of wave equations, wave superposition, concepts of Fourier analysis, Fourier integrals, the bandwidth theorem and more. All too often, the result has been memorization, frustration and exodus. The introduction of a third-semester dedicated course on waves and Fourier analysis as a prelude to modern physics and quantum mechanics helps in this. In this presentation we describe some of the distinct advantages of such a course for retention of physics majors and aspects of the curriculum for such a course that we have developed.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1F01:   

Determining the accuracy of an ultrasonic motion detector velocity calculation.
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Dan Beeker, Indiana University
(812) 855-5903, debeeker@indiana.edu
  Co-Author(s): Alexei Krainev
  Abstract: Although the ultrasonic motion detector is ubiquitous in the first year physics labs, only rarely is the accuracy of this device examined. A simple method for determining the accuracy of motion detector velocity calculations using photogates and a Mindstorm robot is demonstrated. In addition to providing a simple way to determine the accuracy of an important parameter, the Mindstorm robot introduces a very high "play factor" to the activity.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1F02:   

Correlation between students' performance on free-response and multiple-choice questions
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: ShihYin Lin, University of Pittsburgh
412-708-0116, hellosilpn@gmail.com
  Co-Author(s): Chandralekha Singh
  Abstract: When it comes to assessing students' learning in physics, there is always concern about the format of the assessment tool. While a multiple-choice test provides an efficient tool for assessment because it is easy to grade, some instructors are concerned that a free-response format facilitates a more accurate understanding of students' thought processes. In addition, free-response questions allow students to get partial credit for displaying different extent of understanding of the subject tested. Here, we discuss a study in which two carefully designed research-based multiple-choice questions were transformed into free-response format and implemented on an exam in a calculus-based introductory physics course. Students' performance on the free-response questions was graded twice, first by using a rubric, and second by converting the answers back to one of the choices in the original multiple-choice format (which was not provided to the students). We found that there was an excellent match between the different free-response answers and the original choices in the multiple-choice questions. The strong correlation between the two scores graded using different methods suggests that carefully designed multiple-choice assessments can mirror the relative performance on the free-response questions while maintaining the benefits of grading and ease of quantitative analysis. This work was supported by NSF.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1F03:   

Using Analogical Problem Solving to Learn about Friction
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: ShihYin Lin, University of Pittsburgh
412-708-0116, hellosilpn@gmail.com
  Co-Author(s): Chandralekha Singh
  Abstract: Research suggests many students have the notion that the magnitude of the static frictional force is always equal to its maximum value. In this study, we examine introductory students' ability to learn from analogical problem solving between two problems that are similar in the application of physics principle (Newton's second law) but one problem involves friction which often triggers the misleading notion. Students from algebra- and calculus-based introductory physics courses were asked in a quiz to take advantage of what they learned from a solved problem provided, which was about tension in a rope, to solve another problem involving friction. To help students process through the analogy deeply and contemplate the applicability of associating the frictional force with its maximum value, students in different recitation classrooms received different scaffolding. We will discuss the types of scaffolding support that were effective in helping students learn these concepts. Supported by NSF.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1F04:   

Uniform circular motion lab apparatus with persistence of vision display
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Zengqiang Liu, Saint Cloud State University
320-308-3154, zliu@stcloudstate.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jing Chen, ShunJie Yong, Steve Zinsli
  Abstract: In uniform circular motion, if angular speed doubles then centripetal acceleration quadruples. A physics lab apparatus and demonstration has been constructed to demonstrate and accurately prove the above relation in an elegant and creative way. The apparatus measures angular speed and centripetal acceleration simultaneously and reports the results using a persistence of vision (POV) display. A POV display eliminates the need for wireless communication or complicated mechanical contacts between the rotating apparatus and a data collection system. Hall Effect switches are used to sense angular speed while an accelerometer is used to sense acceleration. The POV display is constructed with light-emitting diodes. The entire system is controlled by an Arduino microcontroller. Detailed measurements with the apparatus proved its accuracy. The POV display appealed to lots of younger children when it was presented at various campus activities, making it a point of attraction for future physics public outreach activities.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1F05:   

Gender Matters: The Gender Gap at the University of Michigan
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Kate E Miller, University of Michigan
248-229-2073, katemi@umich.edu
  Co-Author(s): Timothy McKay
  Abstract: While we expect that some background factors, such as prior test scores and academic preparation, should influence student success, we are concerned about inappropriate impact of uncontrollable factors, such as gender, socio-economic status, and race. In particular, there is a nationally recognized gender disparity in introductory physics performance. We describe analysis of data for 48,579 students who have taken introductory physics at the University of Michigan over 14 years. We clearly detect the presence and persistence of a gendered performance gap in all courses and in all terms considered. We find that differing mathematical preparation as reflected in SAT Math scores accounts for some of this gender gap, especially in the female dominated life science sequence. The physical science and engineering sequence, which is substantially male dominated, shows a strong gender difference even after differing mathematical preparation is accounted for.
  Footnotes: None
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PST1F06:   

Using Low-friction Carts to Measure Viscosity
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:45PM - 9:30PM
  Author: Mark E. Reeves, George Washington University
2029946279, reevesme@gwu.edu
  Co-Author(s): Deepa Raghu
  Abstract: The subject of continuum mechanics is often avoided in the IPLS class, as is a meaningful discussion of nonconservative forces. This is unfortunate since viscosity is essential to understanding the physical aspects of cellular motion and heart disease. I will describe a lab in which students determine viscosity from measurements of the velocity vs. time for metal balls dropped in liquids of various viscosities from air to glycerin, and measure kinematics of the balls falling under the influence of gravity. The balls pull low-friction carts, which allows for a very small driving force and also to measure the position and velocity of the ball continuously. The students observe a variety of behaviors ranging from free fall to reaching terminal velocity. Students measure the position of the cart by an ultrasonic transducer or a photogated pulley, as the weight pulls it down the track. There are a number of non-ideal experimental aspects such as viscous drag on the string and the short drop that doesn't allow attainment of terminal velocity in less viscous liquids. These allow the students to think more deeply about the physics of realistic conditions and make use of Taylor series for their data analysis, should this be desired.
  Footnotes: This research is supported by the NSF/CCLI program. More information can be found at http://www.phys.gwu.edu/iplswiki/index.php/Laboratories
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PST1F07:   

Approaches to Address Persistent Misconceptions about Electric Current Among In-service teachers
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.01
  Time: 8:00PM - 8:45PM
  Author: Jung Sook Lee, Seoul National University, Korea
jslee@seas.harvard.edu
  Co-Author(s): Jung Bog Kim
  Abstract: This paper explores the development of a tutorial emphasizing movement of charges, and analyzing the changes from teachers during implementing the tutorial. We did preliminary research to determine the elementary teachers’ specific difficulties and misconceptions about electrical currents. In the results from the data, we developed a tutorial and implemented it for in-service teachers. Multiple-choice questionnaires on the concept were given before the tutorial and after completing the tutorial, multiple-choice questionnaires were given again. To better observe some of the specific changes teachers make, all activities of the tutorial were recorded and transcribed. When the educators understood the characteristics of conductors and insulators, they were able to explain friction, induction, and the movement of charges at contact points. This ended the confusion between electric charge and current. These tutorials played an important role in correcting the idea that voltage is the same as current. By emphasizing the interaction of charges in a closed circuit, the teachers understood that current was not consumed but remained constant. Also, the tutorials corrected the misconception that the battery produces constant current in all situations; instead, the teachers began thinking in terms of the movement of charges through a battery in a series and a parallel circuit. Supported by SENS (Science Education for the Next Society), BK21
  Footnotes: None
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