AAPT Summer Meeting 2020 in Grand Rapids, MI

Online Program

Times are shown using Eastern Daylight Time (EDT)

Sessions & Panels

  • Science and Religion  

      • Critical Reflections on Sharing Stories from a Physics Community
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Robert Dalka
      • Type: Contributed
      • Gathering and sharing personal stories is a science communication approach that communities have used to showcase the range of individuals who participate in their respective community. In this talk I will share my experiences as an undergraduate writinga column focused on one university’s Physics community for the student newspaper. I originally treated this as a journalistic activity in which I interviewed a member of the community about a specific topic and presented my account of the conversation supplemented by outside resources. Now, as a graduate student, I am critically reflecting on the process of writing the columns. As I do this, I am finding lessons that can inform future projects that aim to share stories from community members. I will discuss the process of writing these columns and my current thoughts resulting from critical reflections, connecting this with work that others have done around representation in research communities.
      • Activities to Address Equity and Injustice in Physics Classes
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Christopher Gosling, Natasha Holmes

      • Type: Contributed
      • The Underrepresentation Curriculum Project (URC) provides resources to help educators address equity and injustice in STEM through education. Several of the URC lessons offer students the opportunity to gather information and create artifacts. We will briefly present relevant URC lessons and share artifacts that students created while completing these assignments. These artifacts are not only personally meaningful, but also serve as mechanisms to chronicle student learning around these challenging topics.
      • A Space Oddity: Exploring the Intersection of Science and Religion in Physics Classrooms
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Richard Hechter
      • Type: Contributed
      • Physics education, especially astronomy education, is an ideal place to explore the intersection of science and religion. Grounded in tenets of peace education, the study of astronomy can be enriched by punctuating learning outcomes of physics concepts with the stories, mythlore, and teachings emanating from religion and culture. The purpose of this approach is to advance the physics we are teaching by resonating with students’ identities and being an entry to the greater conversation about (under)representation in physics, and how the intersection of religion and science provides insight into living and learning in a multi-religious and multicultural world. This session, which centers on the calendar by which cultural and religious observances are determined, advocates for integrating elements of cultural and religious knowledge with astronomy concepts as an inclusive space for all students. This pragmatic approach aligns with andragogical intentions of developing and delivering an increased holistic and inclusive curriculum.
      • The Influence of Christianity on 19th-Century Physicists
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jill Macko
      • Type: Contributed
      • The 19th-century was a period of giant leaps in physics. Young demonstrated the wave nature of light. Dalton developed atomic theory. Maxwell unified electricity and magnetism. The list goes on and on. At the end of the century, Lord Kelvin famously declared, “There is nothing new to be discovered in physics now.” Each of these discoveries were performed by human beings, who were influenced by their educational background, family upbringing, religious beliefs, and more. For example, Young stated: “For the talents which God has not given me, I am not responsible, but those which I possess, I have hitherto cultivated and employed as diligently as my opportunities have allowed me to do.” How did this belief in God’s gifts of talent impact his scientific work? This talk will focus on the religious views of significant physicists of the 1800’s. Particularly, we will examine how the Christian faith of many 19th-century physicists influenced their scientific endeavors and shaped the field of physics as we know it.
      • Paris, Descartes, Newton, and the Void
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bradley McCoy
      • Type: Contributed
      • Abstract: Reactions of religious organizations to the concept of vacuum (i.e. the void) changed drastically from the University of Paris condemnations in 1277 AD, to Descartes conception in The World (1664 AD), to Newton’s description in Principia (1687 AD). This talk surveys the reactions to, and eventually reception of, the concept of vacuum on religious grounds.
      • Challenging Student Ideas about Religion in a General Education Course
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mariel Meier
      • Type: Contributed
      • COR-400, Science and Human Nature, is a general education science course required of all students at Oglethorpe University. In this course, students learn about scientific ways of knowing and the scientific process through the lens of scientific revolutions. Specifically, the course content focuses on the Copernican Revolution and the Quantum Revolution of the early 20th century. Students often enter this course with preconceived notions of the relationship between religion and the scientific community – in particular, they often perceive religious authority to have produced barriers to scientific progress and discovery throughout history. During this course, we investigate and challenge these notions. In this presentation I will discuss how this material is presented to students and highlight student comments that demonstrate their evolution in thinking about the relationship between science and religion.
      • Anomalies and Miracles: Revisitng an Undergraduate Science and Religion Course
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Morgan, Michael Pettinger

      • Type: Contributed
      • The presenters will describe a course that was developed to explore themes related to science and religion. The course — “Science and Religion: Anomalies and Miracles” — was team taught by professors of physics and religious studies, and was designed around a unifying question that motivated the course content and discussions: Historically, how have practitioners of science and religion dealt with unexplained or unexpected events? How do particular worldviews inform the way they receive, interpret, or reject novel ideas? We will present a big-picture overview of the course content, as well as some specific lessons and discussions that illustrate the unique approaches that the team-taught structure permitted. We will also discuss the results of a student survey about the course and explore what students described as the enduring understandings, more than ten years later, that they retained from the experience.
      • The Effect of Spirituality and Religiousness on Physics Identity and Career Choice
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Saeed Moshfeghyeganeh, Zahra Hazari

      • Type: Contributed
      • A “conflict thesis”, which claims a methodological, factual, and political conflict between science and religion [1], has led to stereotypes about the low competence of religious people in academic careers, especially in western contexts [2]. People withdeeply held religious beliefs are aware of these negative stereotypes about them, which can lower their interest and performance in science [3]. In this study, we draw on survey data to examine the effect of spirituality and religious beliefs on physics identity and career choice.
      • Implementing Positive Psychology in Teaching Physics
      • PAR-C.07
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Rahmat Rahmat, Sau Kuen Yam

      • Type: Contributed
      • Positive Psychology is the scientific study of the strengths that enable individuals and communities to thrive. The field is founded on the belief that people want to lead meaningful and fulfilling lives, to cultivate what is best within themselves, and to enhance their experiences of love, work, and play. Positive Psychology can be used to improve positive learning environment and promote active learning in physics. It can be useful to inspire physics students to have fun with science activities.
  • 2020 David Halliday and Robert Resnick Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Physics Teaching, Deborah Mason-McCaffrey  

      • 2020 David Halliday and Robert Resnick Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Physics Teaching, Deborah Mason-McCaffrey

      • PL09
      • Tue 07/21, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • Mel Sabella
      • Type: None
      • Should Engineers be Teaching Physics?: There are a significant number of engineers teaching Physics at the secondary level. There are data to quantify that. The data are sparse, however, when we ask how many engineers teach physics in 2-year, 4-year, andR1 institutions. If the technology allows, we will take a quick look into that question by polling meeting attendees. So, should engineers be teaching physics? My answer is a qualified ‘Yes.’ We’ll examine a few pros and cons, and some stereotypes. We would be wise to acknowledge that engineers are, indeed, trained to think differently than physicists, which influences our approaches to problem-solving. We also know that teaching can involve things that are difficult to measure; such as building rapport, respect and community. I would like to show how those un-measurables, in concert with my experiences as an engineer, have shaped my approach to teaching physics. I try to balance careful planning and structure, with flexibility and treating teaching as a prototype product that can be continuously improved. And, finally, I will talk about being part of the significant growth in the Physics minor at Salem State University (Massachusetts).
  • 2020 David Halliday and Robert Resnick Award, Deborah Mason-McCaffrey  

      • 2020 David Halliday and Robert Resnick Award, Deborah Mason-McCaffrey
      • PL09
      • Tue 07/21, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mel Sabella
      • Type: Plenary
      • Should Engineers be Teaching Physics?: There are a significant number of engineers teaching Physics at the secondary level. There are data to quantify that. The data are sparse, however, when we ask how many engineers teach physics in 2-year, 4-year, andR1 institutions. If the technology allows, we will take a quick look into that question by polling meeting attendees. So, should engineers be teaching physics? My answer is a qualified ‘Yes.’ We’ll examine a few pros and cons, and some stereotypes. We would be wise to acknowledge that engineers are, indeed, trained to think differently than physicists, which influences our approaches to problem-solving. We also know that teaching can involve things that are difficult to measure; such as building rapport, respect and community. I would like to show how those un-measurables, in concert with my experiences as an engineer, have shaped my approach to teaching physics. I try to balance careful planning and structure, with flexibility and treating teaching as a prototype product that can be continuously improved. And, finally, I will talk about being part of the significant growth in the Physics minor at Salem State University (Massachusetts).
  • 2020 Klopsteg Memorial Lecture Award: James Kakalios  

      • 2020 Klopsteg Memorial Lecture Award: James Kakalios
      • PL02
      • Sun 07/19, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mel Sabella
      • Type: Plenary
      • Superheroes and Public Outreach (No Spandex Required): Costumed superheroes seem to dominate our movie and television screens, making them an excellent delivery system to bring real physics to students and the general public. While the super-powers thesecharacters possess clearly violate the laws of nature, often times how the super-heroes and super-villains utilize their powers is consistent with known physical laws. One can therefore leverage the public’s interest in these characters to illustrate and explain the physics principles that underlie their fantastic adventures. A discussion of the strength of Spider-Man’s webbing can lead to the real physics of carbon nanotubes. What metal would be strong enough for Wonder Woman’s bullet deflecting bracelets? One can draw the connection between the Black Panther’s vibranium suit and conservation of energy, while the Infinity Stones (the MacGuffin in 22 Marvel Cinematic Universe films) can be connected to Emmy Noether and her theory explicating a deep connection between all conservation principles and symmetries in the laws of physics. People come for the superhero ice cream sundae and stay for the real science. If superheroes can help explain physics and the benefits of research in the classroom and to the general public – well, it wouldn’t be the first time these heroes have saved the day
  • 2020 Millikan Medal, David Cook  

      • 2020 Millikan Medal, David Cook
      • PL10
      • Wed 07/22, 11:00AM - 12:00PM (EDT)

      • by Mel Sabella
      • Type: Plenary
      • For years, I have posted on the wall of my office a slightly paraphrased quotation that is credited to John Stuart Mill: “Students who are never required to do what they think they cannot do never discover what they can do.” Confidently attempting the (seemingly) impossible is an important component of individual—and I think also of departmental—growth. Students’ growth is damped if they are never gently nudged to attempt the impossible. Departmental growth is limited unless the department regularly undertakes coordinated ambitious activities that may initially seem unlikely to succeed. My own department at Lawrence provides my case study. As Metropolitan opera star Beverly Sills once said, ``You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.’’
  • 2020 Paul W. Zitzewitz Excellence in K-12 Teaching Award, Ann Walkup  

      • 2020 Paul W. Zitzewitz Excellence in K-12 Teaching Award, Ann Walkup
      • PL05
      • Mon 07/20, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mel Sabella
      • Type: Plenary
      • Let's All Do Physics!: Integrating Special Education Accommodations in Physics Curriculum Cranston High School East is both the largest and most diverse high school in Rhode Island according to US News and World Report, with 60% minority students and46% economically disadvantaged. Many are transient, have unconventional families, do not speak English, or have mental/physical disabilities. Many would think these students incapable of learning physics. This is a travesty; anything can be taught once you find common ground. I take the time to learn students’ stories, connect with their backgrounds, and make what I teach relevant to their lives. I enable them to feel successful and confident in their abilities. I find common ground and make physics concepts relatable on their terms. The vocabulary in many textbooks is unapproachable because many students are reading below grade level. Even glossaries use convoluted terminology in definitions. Books and technology can be intimidating; not every student is technology-savvy. Despite all that, no student is unteachable; they just need to be better understood by their teacher. As physics teachers, we need to teach the students in front of us, tailor what we are teaching to what they need to learn, and most importantly, teach them to be curious lifelong learners.
  • 2020 Recipients of the Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT  

      • 2020 Recipients of the Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT
      • PL11
      • Wed 07/22, 11:00AM - 12:00PM (EDT)

      • by Mel Sabella
      • Type: Plenary
      • Douglas Brown and Dan Burns are the 2020 recipients of the Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT.
  • 30 Demos in 60 Minutes  

      • 30 Demos in 60 Minutes
      • STPAR-8
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Wenday Adams
      • Type: other
  • AAPT Speakers Bureau: Purpose and Samples  

      • AAPT Speakers Bureau: Purpose and Samples
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Charles Holbrow
      • Type: other
      • This session will acquaint attendees with and encourage their use of the AAPT Speakers' Bureau. It will begin with a description of the history and purpose of the Speakers' Bureau, including information about how to request a speaker and how to register as a speaker. It will conclude with brief presentations by several of the available speakers.
      • Lab Equipment for EVERYONE in Alabama!
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Tommi Holsenbeck
      • Type: Invited
      • Imagine if every public high school science department had thousands of dollars’ worth of high-tech equipment available to educate their students…with Alabama Science in Motion they have access to that and more! 33 classroom teachers (specialists in Physics, Biology or Chemistry) at 11 universities across the state deliver over $11 million work of labs, demos, equipment and more direct to science classrooms. Through workshops, co-teaching, and online methods ASIM works with teachers. This "share the wealth" model can be adopted in all states. Look at our website: www.cws.auburn.edu/asim to see the lessons using learning cycles, white boarding, PER, formative assessment, teacher sharing and more. Many additions to the physics program came from the MSP APEX Grant at Alabama A&M, in partnership with AAPT. ASIM enables physics teachers to acquire a deeper knowledge of physics content and employ more effective pedagogical strategies based on physics education research, enabling students to achieve higher gains.
      • Benefits of AAPT to High School Physics Teachers
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Invited
      • As a high school teacher and E-mentor I have found a wealth of information within the AAPT organization to not only assist with my own instruction but to provide support for new teachers in the field. Everything from adopt a physicist to digi-kits is at my finger tips. As a physics teaching association I believe many members do not realize the breadth of resources available and much of the resources are underused.
      • Computational Modeling in an Introductory Physics Course
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Thomas O'Kuma
      • Type: Invited
      • You and/or your department are interested in introducing computational modeling into your introductory physics courses, but want some concrete ideas of how to accomplish this. You want it to be student friendly; i.e., not requiring much prior student programming experience. You want it to be instructor friendly; i.e., not requiring huge time investment for the faculty to implement. You want it to be affordable; i.e., not requiring a huge investment by the department, faculty or student. This presentation will illustrate a way to accomplish introducing computational modeling into introductory physics courses.
      • Motivation for the Speakers Bureau
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gordon Ramsey
      • Type: Invited
      • Many speakers’ bureaus exist to provide lists of potential speakers for important events. Scientific bureaus tend to provide lists of speakers with specific expertise in science related topics. The AAPT Speakers Bureau was established early last decade to provide AAPT members and sections with information on available speakers for physics related events. The list can be used for local or national meetings and contain a wide variety topics related to physics and physics education. It is searchable, by geography (sections), topics or speakers names. I will give a small sample of two popular talks that I have given in many locations as an example of what the speakers’ bureau can provide. These are “Physics of Music” and “Physics of Cats”. The AAPT Speakers’ Bureau can be found at: https://aapt.org/Resources/speakers_bureau-landing.cfm.
      • Contributing to the AAPT Speakers Bureau: Students as collaborators in creating effective, inclusive learning spaces

      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mel Sabella, Jamia Whitehorn, Ember Smith, Gregory Curry, Andrea Van Duzor

      • Type: Invited
      • The AAPT Speakers Bureau can be a powerful tool to share the expertise of AAPT members and disseminate the diverse work we do to support physics education at all levels throughout the world. The work of my group, at Chicago State University, focuses on supporting students underrepresented in physics by creating opportunities for faculty to collaborate with students on education reform efforts. Much of this work leverages the Learning Assistant Model, input from students, and input from undergraduate education researchers. This student expertise can create effective, inclusive learning environments as well as shifts in who has power in the classroom and who has power in how our learning environments are structured. These are exciting spaces to work in for both faculty and students who all play a role in how we think about physics teaching and learning.
      • AAPT Speakers Bureau: Mysteries of Quantum Physics
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Chandralekha Singh
      • Type: Invited
      • The AAPT Speakers Bureau provides AAPT members with an opportunity to share their passion, excitement and expertise in physics with the public as well as students at all levels. I have always enjoyed sharing my passion for quantum physics with the publicand K-16 students. Quantum mechanics is a powerful and mysterious theory. It is our best theory for explaining everything we understand about the properties of matter and the world around us. This understanding has led to incredible transformation of science and technology in the last century. However, even Einstein was disturbed by some of its predictions. We are still doing experiments to understand the most unsettling predictions and foundations of quantum physics. At the same time, researchers are using the most bizarre aspects of quantum theory to create new technologies like quantum computers. It is never too early to learn about the fascinating mysteries of quantum physics.
      • The Future of Optics is Programmable
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gabriel Spalding
      • Type: Invited
      • We teach Optics by leveraging a coherent series of hands-on laboratory engagements that connect well with classroom discussion of mathematical modeling. These labs directly explore mathematical models contained in Optics texts, commonly utilizing liquid crystal Spatial Light Modulators (SLMs), which allow simple and direct programmatic control of phase, amplitude, or polarization across the field of a beam of light. As added bonus, their use avoids the excessive burdens associated with manual alignment and re-alignment (and re-alignment and...) that would be required for systematic studies based on traditional (fixed) optical components. Again, SLMs allow direct control of amplitude and phase modulation of beams, which is useful for teaching Fresnel Diffraction, Fraunhofer Diffraction, and Fourier Optics, as well as spatial filtering, computer-generated Holograms, Aberration Correction, Laser Modes, and much, much more (e.g., encoding information, the linear momentum, spin angular momentum, and orbital angular momentum of light beams).
      • Using Spandex to Teach Physics
      • PAR-A.01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gary White
      • Type: Invited
      • A sheet of spandex is a terrific accessory for any physics classroom, useful for a wide variety of activities from exploring solar system origin and structure to modeling tidal effects to visualizing electrostatic potential wells to making adjustable slingshots. I will demonstrate how I use spandex both in my own classrooms and in presentations to the general public, and provide some background about the physics of stretched spandex.
  • APS Plenary - Artemis Spyrou, Michigan State University  

      • APS Plenary - Artemis Spyrou, Michigan State University
      • PL08
      • Tue 07/21, 11:00AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Plenary
      • Nuclear Science: Rare Isotopes at FRIB and what to do with them - Nuclear Science as a field has been around for more than 100 years. Many of its mysteries have already been explored, but there are still important open questions that the field is trying to address even today. One of the big questions is how neutrons and protons combine together to form bound systems (isotopes) and what are the properties of each combination. At Michigan State University (MSU) there is a 50-year history of producing and studying the rarest of these isotopes. Some can be used for practical applications for the benefit of society, and others live for fractions of a second and are only important in explosive stellar processes. The next generation rare isotope laboratory for the US, the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) is currently under construction at MSU. FRIB is expected to give us access to roughly 1000 new isotopes, never before created or studied in a lab. In this talk I will discuss how rare isotopes are produced at FRIB and the important scientific questions that FRIB will address. I will also present resources that were developed by the facility’s outreach team to help scientists and teachers bring the science of FRIB into the hands of students of any age.
  • APS Plenary - Wolfgang Bauer, Michigan State University  

      • APS Plenary - Wolfgang Bauer, Michigan State University
      • PL07
      • Tue 07/21, 11:00AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Plenary
      • The Physics of Green Energy: The near-exponential increase of greenhouse gas emissions due to human activity and the associated global warming are established facts.   At present, humans consume approximately 20 TW of average power, overwhelmingly supplied by fossil fuels.  What does it take to supply this amount of power from renewable resources?  There are physical limitations (Betz Limit, Shockley-Queisser Limit, storage cycle efficiency, raw materials constraints, …), but there are also economic and financial ones. This presentation will try to give a global perspective as well as a local perspective, with the campus of Michigan State University as a sample of what has been, what can be, and what needs to be accomplished.
  • Astronomy Paper  

      • Online Astronomy Programming and Virtual Interaction
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ken Brandt
      • Type: Contributed
      • Using Zoom, Stellarium Planetarium Software, and video programming from NASA and ESA, I have built a set of planetarium programs being offered locally and internationally. Here I present lessons learned from these interactive programs, and a set of best practices for teaching astronomical content virtually. A major challenge has been audience interaction. I present some strategies to get the audience more engaged, as this might be useful anywhere virtual teaching and learning are being used.
      • Supporting Families’ Collaborative Learning of Astronomy
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Luke Conlin, Megan Luce

      • Type: Contributed
      • At public observatories, families have an opportunity to learn astronomy together. However, the way public observations are typically structured present obstacles for collaborative learning. Often, only one person can look at a time while an expert describes what is in view and gives background information. We have been exploring ways of setting up activities for families to learn astronomy in more collaborative ways that rely less on facilitator explanation. We report on a study in which a family pilot tested new activities to encourage more collaborative sensemaking. We found key factors that supported the family’s collaborative learning include (1) using activities that shift authority and control to each member of the family, (2) Having a variety of activities that can be deployed at strategic times rather than a fixed schedule, and (3) Being responsive to the family dynamics, including the emotional needs of each family member.
      • Hands-on Radio Astronomy in the Classroom Using a Horn Telescope
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by John Makous
      • Type: Contributed
      • The description and operation of a horn radio telescope that can be used in introductory physics and astronomy classrooms will be presented. The telescope used in the investigations, which is designed to detect the 21 cm wavelength emitted by atomic hydrogen, can be constructed easily and at an affordable cost. Projects that will be discussed include making a map of hydrogen in the Milky Way Galaxy, measuring its profile, and determining a rotation curve.
      • Extent of Formative Assessment-Based Active Learning in Interactive Planetarium Shows
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sara Schultz, Timothy Slater

      • Type: Contributed
      • Simply having a virtual reality planetarium facility to immerse students beneath a projected night sky in and of itself is insufficient to automatically ensure student learning occurs. Modern teaching strategies, like active learning, have consistently shown to move students toward a better and longer-lasting understanding in classrooms, and one naturally wonders how this plays out in the planetarium. This observation study evaluated the nature of active learning-based formative assessment conversation cycles in the planetarium and, using follow up clinical interviews, identified rationale or barriers to their use. A synthesis of collected data found scant evidence of complete formative assessment conversation cycles, but varying degrees of interactivity between the planetarium lecturer and the audience were observed. Similar to what researchers report about typical K-12 classrooms, the results of this study reveal that active learning featuring assessment conversation cycles is largely absent in the planetarium programs sampled.
      • A Flat Earth?
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bruce Sherwood
      • Type: Contributed
      • Flat-earthism is one kind of science denial, and it asserts that scientists conspire with governments to keep secret the "fact" that the Earth is flat. Many scientists' attempts to disprove a flat Earth unfortunately cite evidence that is not easily accessible to a non-scientist. I have made a navigable 3D computational model of a popular U.S. flat-earthers' model of a flat Earth, which makes it possible to identify a number of naked-eye observations that strongly disagree with the predictions of the flat-earthers' own model. This is potentially useful because flat-earthers privilege naked-eye observations as the only valid kind of evidence. I will demonstrate the computational model, which is available at tinyurl.com/FEmodel.
      • Preliminary Results on Students in Dispersed Remote Telescope Observing Teams
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Timothy Slater, Brian Uzpen

      • Type: Contributed
      • Undergraduate research experiences provide mechanisms for enculturating students into the community of scientific research and sharpening research skills. These experiences typically fall into two categories in astronomy: either highly competitive national experiences or localized experiences run by local faculty with access to institutional observing facilities. In leveraging opportunities provided by the remotely controlled Las Cumbres Observatory, we are exploring a third option—25 geographically distributed research teams of a mentoring faculty member and 3-to-4 undergraduate teams collaboratively measuring the distance to a nearby galaxy. As a first step to understanding potential impacts, we find limited changes to student perceptions of science identity, scientific community values and changes of their understanding of scientific inquiry, despite completing an entire inquiry cycle, including publishing of a formal scientific paper.
      • Extending Engagement Beyond the Planetarium Show: Big Astronomy in Chile
      • PAR-D.01
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jesica Trucks, Kathleen Hinko, Shannon Schmoll

      • Type: Contributed
      • The Big Astronomy Project is a multi-institutional effort that aims to share the stories of the people and places that make big astronomy possible in Chile. We have developed a model, the Dome+ model, to identify best practices for extending engagement beyond planetarium shows. The model’s main component is a planetarium show, where planetarium visitors are shown NSF ground-based observatories in Chile. To support STEM identity, interest, and agency for planetarium visitors, we are creating additional resources such as weekly virtual sessions with STEM professionals, a web portal with additional content, and a suite of hands-on activities. The project strives to 1) promote awareness of the investments in astronomy being made by the US in Chile, 2) encourage interest in diverse STEM career opportunities at large observatories, 3) share knowledge of the science enabled by big astronomy, 4) increase perceptions by Latinx youth and adults about careers at observatories.
  • Astronomy Poster  

      • A van der Waals Phase Transition in a Compact Star
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Keith Andrew, Kristopher Andrew, David Suarez, Cody Humphrey

      • Type: Poster
      • Many students are familiar with the ideal gas law equation of state which is often treated in early chemistry courses. They are also familiar with phase transitions and phase diagrams but have not explored phase transitions with a quantitative model or the units used in physics and astrophysics applications. Here we look at an application of the van der Waals equation of state to a planetary interior and to the quark-hadron phase change in a compact stellar core using Newtonian gravity. Students used the quark phase diagram with data from accelerator experiments to estimate the van der Waals constants to construct an equation of state. The resulting equation includes the modeled phase transition with binodal and spinodal curves describing a superheated liquid state and a supercooled vapor state. Students visualized the results in Mathematica and were surprised to see core stellar temperatures near a trillion Kelvins.
      • Disentangling student understanding of apparent motions of Sun and stars
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mieke De Cock, Hans Bekaert, Wim Van Dooren, An Steegen, Hans Van Winckel

      • Type: Poster
      • Understanding the apparent motion of the Sun, Moon and stars from the point of view of an observer on Earth is seen as an essential starting point for the study of many astronomical phenomena. However, research has shown that children as well as secondary school and university students and adults have difficulties with these basic concepts. In this contribution, we describe the design of the Apparent Motion of Sun and Stars test, an instrument to measure to what extent students have insight in the apparent motion of Sun and stars. We disentangled the phenomena related to these apparent motions and we propose a framework that allows comparing students’ understanding of the different aspects of these motions for the Sun and the equivalent for the stars. We present the framework, the reliability and the validity of the instrument. Moreover, we report on the results of our qualitative analysis of student reasoning.
      • Student Perceptions of Observation
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jacqueline Dunn
      • Type: Poster
      • When teaching astronomy, we present many concepts and facts learned via observation alone. One problem encountered in astronomy is convincing students that astronomers know what they say they know about an object. Beyond teaching students what we can learn from light, and how we can learn from observations of light, we need to teach students that we can learn from observation alone. To gauge student beliefs about the utility of observation, an exercise was designed where students would observe people without interacting them in any way. The goal was for students to see what they could learn just through observation. A comparison was made between student attitude’s across two groups: non-science majors and science majors. Surprisingly, the science majors showed a lack of appreciation for the utility of observation alone, while the non-science majors were surprised by the conclusions they were able to form through their observations.
      • New Information on Pulsating RR Lyrae Star DM And
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Adanna Frazier, Thomas O'Kuma

      • Type: Poster
      • This is a study of the photometric data of the RR Lyrae star, DM And, in the B, V, sdss-i, and sdss-z filters. The light curve shapes and estimated period (.63115 days in the B-filter, .6294 days in the V-filter, .632 days in the sdss-i filter, .63225 days in the sdss-z filter, and an average period of .6312 days) represent that of a typical RRab type RR Lyrae star. However, not everything measured correlated with expected results.While qualitative spectroscopic parallax in B and the measured distance using V-Band period luminosity relationship agree with GAIA, the sdss-i and sdss-z filters did not due to the star showing significantly dimmer magnitude (a magnitude difference of .144 in the sdss-i filter and .76 in the sdss-z filter, compared to the RR Lyrae star AF Vel). There is also significant variations in the measured distances which resulted in an inconsistent average distance of 1,924.8 parsec.
      • Reacting to the Present: A Role-Playing Game for Introductory Astronomy
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Josh Fuchs, Margaret Gonzales

      • Type: Poster
      • The Astronomy Decadal Survey occurs once every ten years to determine priorities for the next decade in astronomy. We describe a new role-playing game designed for Introductory Astronomy courses in which students play the roles of current astronomers to decide which projects should be funded. Students must use knowledge gained from the whole class to decide how to balance scientific priorities and feasibility, funding levels, cultural sensitivities, and global cooperation to rank six telescope proposals. This game engages students in the course material by having them debate each other and provides a summative activity to assess learning outcomes. We will describe how the game is structured and implemented, learning outcomes, and make it freely available.
      • Hands-on General Relativity Activities for Introductory Astronomy
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by DAVID MORGAN
      • Type: Poster
      • This poster presentation will present several hands-on “lab” activities for introducing students in the astronomy classroom to some of the basic ideas of general relativity. Most of the activities involve paper & pencil measurements and simple objects like balls, balloons, flower vases and globes. Activities that explore Hubble’s Law and the accelerating expansion of the universe will also be shown. Finally, a simple activity will be described that makes use of the cosmological models built-into the Wolfram Alpha computational engine.
      • Combining Existing Technology & Resources for Stronger Outreach In Today’s World
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dave Milewski, Emmanuel Masongsong

      • Type: Poster
      • The 1969 Apollo 11 Moon landing led to significant advances in technology while heightening enthusiasm for science, creating a lasting impact. Half a century later, people are still mesmerized by the wealth of continued returns in many fields, with unprecedented levels of interest in astronomy and space exploration. Now in its 11th year, NASA’s International Observe The Moon Night Event proves how simple community strategizing leads to widespread education and outreach to citizens of all ages. Combining numerous scientific demonstrations (including basic physics, meteorite specimens, and historical Apollo artifacts), we make planetary science accessible for everyone. Via UCLA Institute for Planets and Exoplanets, a joint-collaboration amongst specialists in multiple UCLA departments, and people involved in NASA missions, those specialties of professional scientists are merged to bring their expertise to the public. We hope to expose everyone to basic science and scientific phenomena empowering the next generation of researchers and explorers.
      • Nucleosynthesis for high school students
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Margaret Norris
      • Type: Poster
      • The synthesis of new elements in cosmic events - on both slow (fusion in stars) and fast (supernovae, colliding neutron stars) time scales - is an unsettled science topic that excites the imagination. When the LIGO/VIRGO collaborations observed the firstgravitational waves from colliding neutron stars in 2017, nuclear astrophysics and gravitational physics combined to generate the new field of MultiMessenger Astronomy (MMA). MMA connects to classrooms through both physical science standards (nuclear processes, energy) and earth/space science standards (Earth's Place in the Universe). We have developed an activity to model nucleosynthesis in the classroom by having students explore the competition between slow-neutron capture (the s-process) and rapid-neutron capture (the r-process) at different sites in the cosmos. The activity introduces modeling, probability and nuclear beta-decay. It can be used as a culmination of a unit on the origin of the elements or as a stand-alone activity.
      • Working with Real Astronomy Data
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Luisa Rebull
      • Type: Poster
      • Did you know there is a lot of professional astronomy data out there, right now, available to you, for free? Professional astronomy archives are open to the public; tools are getting better all the time to not just access these data, but also work with them. This poster summarizes how to access data from IRSA, the Infrared Science Archive (http://irsa.ipac.caltech.edu). The online tools give you access to multi-wavelength data (images and catalogs) and provide basic tools for analysis.
      • The Pan-African School for Emerging Astronomers
      • PS-B.02
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Linda Strubbe
      • Type: Poster
      • The Pan-African School for Emerging Astronomers (PASEA) is a short course in astronomy for university students from across Africa, designed and taught by a collaboration of astronomers from Africa and around the world. Our program started in West Africa in 2013, where it was known as WAISSYA, and has been held four times in Nigeria and Ghana. Building on our success and the enthusiasm of African participants outside West Africa, our team decided to expand to a Pan-African program. Our goals include building a critical mass of astronomers across Africa, and exchanging teaching ideas between Africa and outside. I highlight four major aspects of PASEA and their significance to Astronomy for Development across Africa: (1) our inquiry-based curriculum; (2) "paired-teaching," in which international partners teach together to exchange and learn new ways of teaching; (3) our active alumni community; and (4) our evaluations to measure the effectiveness of the program.
  • Best Practices in Educational Technology  

      • Physicality and making in a computational physics class
      • PAR-A.02
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Timothy Atherton, Brian Gravel, Ezra Gouvea

      • Type: Invited
      • Computation is inextricably intertwined with virtually every aspect of contemporary Physics research practice including design of experiments, creation of theory, simulations as well as collection, analysis and visualization of data. In contrast, computational activities in Physics classrooms have tended to focus on coding, problem-solving and simulation. To bridge this gap between pedagogy and practice, we have developed a series of making activities whereby students create physical artifacts from low-cost materials, collect quantitative data describing their motion, build models to predict their behavior and reconcile experiment and theory. Results from our first two trials in a group and project-based Computational Physics class will be presented, showing how this approach enables students to engage in disciplinary practice. Design and implementation advice for instructors interested in adopting similar techniques will be provided.
      • A Computational CURE: Canopy Waves, Colliding Galaxies, and Traveling Salestronauts
      • PAR-A.02
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nicholas Nelson, Dillon Anderson, Blake Buckner, Bjorn Larsen, Joshua Meadows

      • Type: Invited
      • Involvement in undergraduate research has been shown to have positive effects on physics students, including improved conceptual and technical understanding, increased interest in graduate study, enhanced motivation for future coursework, and better scientific communication skills. Summer research programs, however, have not kept pace with the roughly tripling in the number of physics majors over the past 20 years. An alternative model is that of Course-based Undergraduate Research Experiences (CUREs) in which students gain research experience through a course. Here we present an example of a CURE in computational physics which produced three research projects: first, computational fluid dynamics model of so-called canopy waves, which have been observed in wind blowing through orchards; second, updating a classic result from astrophysics that explains the morphology of colliding galaxies; third, a futuristic update on the traveling salesman problem where our salesman travels through the solar system, which we term the traveling salestronaut.
      • Integrating Computation in Introductory Physics Labs
      • PAR-A.02
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Steven Wolf
      • Type: Invited
      • At East Carolina University, we have been transforming our Introductory Lab Curriculum to privilege authentic science practices as a part of our XLABs (Cross-Disciplinary Lab Transformation) project (NSF-IUSE: #1725655). One of the science practices identified by the NGSS is analyzing and interpreting data. This practice is executed in computational environments in all modern scientific and engineering settings. I will discuss how we are integrating computation in our Introductory Physics labs, focusing on the environments that we are using and the ways that we are supporting student computational skill development.
  • Broadening Participation in STEM through Science Cafes and Festivals  

      • Broadening Participation in STEM through Science Cafes and Festivals
      • PAR-F.01-PAN
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kristi Concannon
      • Type: Panel
      • The scientific literacy of the general population can be improved through engagement in public science events. From small scale science cafes to large city-wide festivals, the panelists in this session will describe the challenges and successes of increasing STEM participation through public outreach events.
  • Communicating Sensitive Topics in the Classroom  

      • Talking about genders in the classroom
      • PAR-F.02
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jennifer Blue, Adrienne Traxler

      • Type: Invited
      • Gender can be a touchy subject in any classroom, and perhaps it seems even more so in physics, where many women and LGBTQIA+ people have traditionally felt unwelcome. This talk will start with information about the status quo for these groups. Then it will provide advice and resources to help physics teachers as we work towards making everyone feel welcome in our classrooms, at our schools, and in our workplaces.
      • Tough Topics - Stepping Outside the Comfort Zone
      • PAR-F.02
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Pearl Sandick
      • Type: Invited
      • In our roles as instructors and mentors, we are responsible, at a minimum, for training our students to be competent scientists and colleagues. We are also responsible for maintaining a respectful, positive, and inclusive classroom environment that is conducive to learning for all students. It can be necessary, from time to time, to discuss issues of gender, race, and identity, and to lead productive conversations about these topics with our students. In the course of my career, I have increasingly embraced these conversations as teaching and learning moments. Here, I will discuss some examples of leading students into what can be uncomfortable territory, what I’ve learned on these excursions, and the benefits of such discussions in the classroom and beyond.
  • Computer Modeling and Computation in Labs  

      • Modern Computer Applications in the Advanced Laboratory
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Daniel Borrero
      • Type: Invited
      • While computers have long played an important part in Physics laboratory instruction, the scope of their use is often limited to relatively simple data processing tasks like fitting experimental data to well-established analytical models. While these applications are obviously important, they are not representative of the full range of ways that computers are used in modern physics research laboratories. In this talk, I will discuss how the Physics department at Willamette University has created engaging laboratory experiences that tightly integrate experiment, theory, and computational modeling and incorporate modern computational tasks like data visualization, simulation of experimental systems, and computer-aided design and fabrication of experimental apparatus. These activities have reduced the time that faculty spend training undergraduates to work in their labs allowing students to make more significant research contributions, while also helping them acquire crucial computation skills that they will need as they join the 21st century workforce.
      • Adding Computation to the Introductory Physics Lab
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ashley Carter
      • Type: Invited
      • There have been many recent calls to overhaul the introductory lab course. This is because it doesn’t meet a commonly stated goal of reinforcing lecture content (Holmes et al., Physics Today, 2018), nor is it focused on teaching experimental skills like designing experiments and analyzing data (Kozminski et al., AAPT, 2014). In addition, it doesn’t teach computational modeling—where students use computational tools to conceive, construct, or test models—even though the laboratory is where this modeling would naturally occur (Behringer et al., AAPT, 2017). One method to overhaul the course that is gaining traction is to have students engage in open-ended projects. I will discuss implementation of this method and how it can be used to teach computational modeling to introductory students without any computational skills. This discussion will include computational practicums, emphasizing modeling in the lab notebook, requiring students to vary two variables in their models, and building in iteration.
      • Computational Modeling of Seiche in an Circular Above-Ground Pool
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Hugh Gallagher, Benjamin Weir, Melissa Marry

      • Type: Poster
      • A surface seiche is a regular oscillation of the surface of an enclosed body of water such as a lake or bay. This project examines the formation of a seiche in a small circular above-ground pool. Analyzing observations from an ultrasonic range sensor, wedetermine the initial amplitude, period and decay constant of the seiche to be 6.2 cm, 1.975 s and 340 s, respectively. Since the decay time constant is much larger than the period, frictional effects should have a relatively small impact on the period of the seiche. We use a finite difference scheme to solve the wave equation in cylindrical coordinates for the surface height. We find that the theoretical period agrees with the observations if a wave speed consistent with the pool dimensions is used instead of the wave speed provided by the shallow wave approximation.
      • Simulating a Pandemic
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Herbert Jaeger
      • Type: Poster
      • Ever since the emergence of the novel corona virus (COVID-19) earlier this year, we have been bombarded with numbers representing observations, estimates, and results of modeling the outbreak of the virus. Models in particular are interesting as they allow to play out a number of scenarios and so help to determine the effectivity of actions with respect to slowing down the infection. In this contribution we show how such a model can be approached so it is suitable for use in an undergraduate computational physics class or an independent study project. The results of this simple simulation show how an outbreak can be affected by measures such as social distancing.
      • Capture, Code, Compare: Integrating Computational Modeling with Video Analysis
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by W. Brian Lane
      • Type: Poster
      • It’s clear that computational modeling has significantly impacted physics education. However, there remains a gap in student sensemaking between the results they see in a computational model and their observation of the physical world. To help my students see that their computer models actually describe reality and learn how to quantitatively discuss how well model and reality match, I’ve developed the Capture, Code, Compare (CCC) activity structure. In CCC, students capture the motion of a physical system and study that motion through video analysis, develop a code that reproduces the motion in a computer animation, and compare the results of the video analysis and animation. This poster will present sample CCC activities and discuss possible means of assessment.
      • Understanding COVID-19 by modeling it
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Peter Nelson
      • Type: Poster
      • Simple epidemiological models are introduced using finite difference methods in Excel. The SIR model explains the initial exponential growth of COVID-19, the effects of social distancing in the US during early April 2020 and successfully predicts the continued spread of the virus during late April and May 2020. The SIR model is the origin of the basic reproduction number R0 and herd immunity. It also predicts what will happen if social distancing is lifted prematurely. A wide range of student research projects are possible for modeling and making predictions based on real data for US states and other countries. See http://circle4.com/biophysics for free sample chapters and videos.
      • Computational Simulations of Introductory Lab Experiments in Physics I
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Deva O'Neil
      • Type: Poster
      • Introductory calculus-based physics is taught at Bridgewater College with both laboratory and computational components. Simple programming in Glowscript (a vpython environment) is introduced to students in recitation section. In two of the lab experiments (cart sliding with constant velocity, collision between two carts), students use the experimental data to determine the parameters for a numerical simulation of the system. The computational activities are designed to provide practice with momentum conservation and with updating the position of an object based on its previous position and velocity. Integrating them with lab activities is intended to promote understanding of the physical parameters. If coded correctly, the numerical output will resemble the experimental data, providing plausibility checks on the code. A more advanced laboratory activity done in Physics I, the ballistic pendulum, has also been simulated numerically by a student as an Honors Upgrade. The simulation applies the principle of momentum conservation to reproduce the motion of a pendulum after a collision with a projectile.
      • Radiological Physics simulation of radiographic image acquisition.
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Peter Riley
      • Type: Poster
      • Radiology practitioners are examined on the underlying radiological physics principles of Photoelectric Absorption and Compton Scatter. Students must understand how these interactions in the patient vary as the x-ray tube acquisition parameters are adjusted. This variation changes the relative tissue contrasts in the radiograph and the detrimental radiation dose to the patient. An interactive Mathematica (1) simulation has been developed which simultaneously shows relative interaction probabilities, patient dose & penetration, and an anthropomorphic chest image. By adjusting the parameters the student can determine an optimal acquisition which minimises patient dose whilst generating sufficient contrast for lesion detection on the radiograph. The simulation instructions lead the student through a series of acquisitions which enable MCQ & SAQ assessments, which have demonstrated enhanced and accelerated comprehension. 1. Mathematica, Wolfram Research Inc., Champain, IL (1989-2020).
      • Arduinos Used to Integrate Programming Skills into an Advanced Lab
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by David Sidebottom
      • Type: Poster
      • Guided by recent AAPT guidelines, reorganization of the lab sequence at Creighton University resulted in a new, intermediate-level course designed to teach the six skills that practicing scientists rely on: constructing knowledge, modeling, designing experiments, developing technical and practical lab skills, analyzing and visualizing data, and communicating physics. As a way of introducing fundamental programming skills, students are tasked to integrate a microprocessor (Arduino Uno) with simple sensors to create basic data acquisition and control systems that can automate measurements. Here we highlight two examples. The first is a simple temperature controller used to maintain the temperature of an aluminum block. The second is a large angle pendulum whose amplitude and half period are measured using a rotary encoder. In both instances, students are challenged to design the program and troubleshoot its final application in the real world.
      • Modeling linear and non-linear drag in horizontal oscillatory motion
      • PAR-G.01
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Kyle Slinker, Eleanor Murray

      • Type: Poster
      • Exponentially damped oscillatory motion is often encountered early in a physics student's education. The closed form solution in the case of linear-in-velocity drag makes this an attractive first model, but realistic systems typically include constant- and/or quadratic-in-velocity drag. The equations of motion for non-linear drag can be solved numerically so that data can be fit using more accurate models. A data set is presented and analyzed which students can use to explore topics such as differing models of friction, numerical modeling techniques, and evaluating and quantifying the agreement between a model and data. Code and data are provided for physics instructors' use.
  • Doing physics and being ____  

      • Doing physics and being a traitor to the white race
      • PAR-C.01
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dimitri Dounas-Frazer
      • Type: Invited
      • I am grappling with the Sisyphean task of treason against whiteness. For me, such treason involves explicitly rejecting racial bonding with other white people, as well as deliberately searching for worldviews generated by peoples outside the boundaries of whiteness. In this talk, I elaborate on my understanding of treason to whiteness, the ‘race traitor’ identity, and connections to my identity as a queer Greek-American physics education researcher. I further describe my experiences as an aspiring race traitor whose family, teaching contexts, and research field are predominantly white. I show how white solidarity operates through both the promise/reality of white privilege and the punishment of treason. Finally, this presentation is an opportunity for me to reflect upon my ideologies and practices in the context of work by bell hooks, Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, James Baldwin, John Garvey, Mab Segrest, Noel Ignatiev, Patricia Hill Collins, and others who have influenced my thinking.
      • Doing physics and being other
      • PAR-C.01
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zahra Hazari
      • Type: Invited
      • Cultural border crossing can stir up feelings of anxiety, pretense, and internal conflict, especially if one feels alien to the culture they are navigating. While individuals can learn to navigate border crossings between cultures, limit their expectations of belonging, and find ways to make meaningful and recognized contributions, the feeling of being "other" is hard to overcome and can be isolating. This has been my experience: feeling recognized but not belonging. For example, I have been identified as the "educator" in physics communities but as the "physicist" in education communities. I have been identified as coming from "somewhere else" in western contexts and as the "American" in eastern contexts. I have been treated as irrationally "religious" in science communities and as overly "analytical" in religious communities. While these experiences are wearisome, they provide substantial opportunities to free oneself from the rigid bounds of any culture. As a community, we need to be cognizant of the cultural boundaries that we create, often unintentionally, so that we can strive to be inclusive in ways that are meaningful to those who are most different from ourselves.
      • “Doing Physics” and Being a Champion for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Professional Society Arena

      • PAR-C.01
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Arlene Modeste Knowles
      • Type: Invited
      • I’ve spent nearly 30 years navigating the physics and, more recently, astronomy communities advocating within the professional society space for women, people of color, LGBT+ people, and others from marginalized groups so that they might thrive in their educational spaces and careers. At the same time, I’ve had to navigate these communities from the identity of a Black Woman without a physics degree, which has contributed to the experiences I’ve had throughout my career and has shaped my approach to this work. In this talk, I’ll share some of my views, motivations, and experiences doing DEI work in the professional society space; discuss some of the work I’ve done including my most recent work leading the AIP Task Force to Elevate the representation of African Americans in Undergraduate Physics (TEAM-UP) project; and reflect on the ways in which each of us can uplift students and scientists from marginalized communities to create a better environment for them and all of us.
      • Doing Physics and Being A Carny
      • PAR-C.01
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Valerie Otero
      • Type: Invited
      • I grew up working at the carnival after school since I was 12, where I still work today. In high school, I was counseled into the “career training program,” which is where they directed all the brown kids. I asked if I could continue to study calculus incareer training and they said, “No, take business math.” I said, “No. I won’t go.” I first found physics my 3rd of 6 years in college. It was math with glitter on top! And…I seemed to belong! I was good at it! I failed my first test though, because I worked 16 hours at the carnival the day before. The upshot is that I gained so much business sense over the years, which has helped me build and sustain programs such as the Learning Assistant Alliance and PEER Physics. I will discuss challenges that come from being a low-income, Chicana in physics.
  • Early Career Topical Discussion  

      • Early Career Topical Discussion
      • STPAR-2
      • by Lindsay Owens
      • Type: Topical
      • Postdocs, new faculty, and other junior Physics Education Research (PER) members are invited to this topical discussion to meet and discuss common issues. As this stage in a career can be a period of significant transition, we are hoping to provide a space to facilitate community building, resources, and professional development for those starting a career in PER. The session format will be an open discussion about identifying what are the needs of early career members in the community, how can we plan strategies to address those needs, and how to build the support structures for that community. We will ask participants to discuss these topics in small groups first, then share those ideas with the room.
  • Effective Practices in Educational Technology  

      • Utilizing Peer-Instruction and Metacognition on Quizzes to Improve Concept Learning
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jessica Bickel, Leah Bunnell, Thijs Heus

      • Type: Contributed
      • This work examines peer-quizzing with metacognition in calculus based introductory physics. Students take individual quizzes and then redo part of the quiz with a partner. Because the students to choose which problems to redo, they must reflect on their confidence level on different concepts (questions). The results show there is a clear benefit to introducing weekly quizzes. While peer quizzes do not result in a clear improvement in the final concept assessment score, there is improvement in the normalized gain. Further, there is a clear signal that students who score above average on their quiz redos will also show above average assessment gains. These results show that while the intervention does not improve the overall grade, it helps individual students at all grade levels improve their understanding in relationship to their peers. It also suggests that interventions for students with low redo scores will have significant impact.
      • Teaching a blended course with TopHat
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Duffy
      • Type: Contributed
      • TopHat is a platform known for in-class quizzing, with students using their phones to respond to questions. However, in our two-semester introductory algebra-based physics sequence, we are leveraging the TopHat platform to do significantly more than that. In addition to the in-class clicker feature, we are using TopHat for (1) pre-class preparation, with quizzes that include videos, content, and feedback from the students to the instructor; (2) online homework; (3) quizzes that are automatically graded; (4) an interactive e-book, with a significant number of embedded simulations. In this talk, I will provide some details about these four different uses, and show examples of each. The vast majority of the material we use was created by us, with a goal of making high-quality content available to the students for a reasonable cost.
      • The Spectrum Laboratory: an online learning environment for authentic inquiry.
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mary Dussault
      • Type: Contributed
      • With funding from NSF’s DRK-12 program, the Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian is researching and developing a next generation browser-based spectra visualization and analysis tool, The Spectrum Laboratory: Investigating the World of Color. Accompanying curriculum investigations enable students to use spectra from publicly available research databases -from atoms and molecules, to plants and pigments, to stars, galaxies and exoplanets - to support a wide range of authentic inquiry projects in the classroom. Spectroscopy is the universal analytical tool of science, yet it is typically touched on only briefly if at all in most people’s pre-college experience. Through this project we are testing the hypothesis that repeated opportunities to generate and analyze graphical spectrum plots and data, in association with real-world data and inquiry-based tasks, can help learners productively reorganize and prioritize existing ideas about light and color phenomena, and support them in productive participation in scientific practices.
      • Engaging Physics Students with Quizizz
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Patrice Edwards
      • Type: Contributed
      • Many studies have shown that engaging students in the learning process increases their attention and focus, motivates them to practice higher level critical thinking skills, and promotes meaningful learning experiences. In this talk, I will share a way that I engage the students in the classroom setting and with online instruction using free a online tool called Quizziz. Quizizz is a free tool. It works on almost any device or web browser. You can access hundreds of learning quizzes that other instructors have created or you can create your own. This is a great way to promote student engagement and fun competitive learning especially when teaching online.
      • A Description of a Project Based Media Course for Pre-service Teachers
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kathleen Falconer, Stefan Hoffmann, André Bresges, Dan MacIsaac

      • Type: Contributed
      • We will describe a Project Based Learning course for physics pre-service teachers for the creation of STEM media. The Media Practicum (MP) course is split into two sections. The first section of MP is designed to help the pre-service teachers to develop an understanding of various tools, techniques and methods for creating media and using media and other educational technology in the school classroom. In groups, the pre-service teachers select a theme or concept which they then use as an exemplar for the use of the various tools, techniques and methods. The purpose of this first section of MP is to provide an opportunity for the students to make an informed decision about tools to use in their design and implementation of their media. The second section of the MP course is the creation of the media and documentation including the embedding of the media in an instructional context.
      • Effective technological methods and teaching practices adopted to successfully complete the calculus based physics II course in remote method.

      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Pratheesh Kumar Jakkala
      • Type: Contributed
      • This paper describes the technological methods adopted and implemented for the successful completion of the College Physics II course, after a sudden transition to remote teaching from face-to-face classes at a large University. This paper describes how the echo 360 learning capture system adopted for successful synchronous lecture delivery without changing the original class structure. Active student-engagement methods,in-class problem solving, peer-to-peer discussion methods, and support systems during live lectures are discussed. Assignment submission, conducting successful online exams, and effective grading practices are also discussed. Virtual office hours, accessing archived lectures and quick response time methods are discussed. A total of 225 students enrolled in the class, an average 80% live attendance, and 40.4 views per archived lecture are recorded. 91% of the students either agreed or strongly agreed that the transition went very smoothly and 96% of the students expressed their happiness with the overall learning experience using the newly adopted methods.
      • Implementing and Evaluating Online Preclass Assignments in Large-Enrollment Introductory Physics

      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Aidan MacDonagh, Michelle Tomasik, Alexander Shvonski, Peter Dourmashkin

      • Type: Contributed
      • We discuss two implementations of low-stakes graded preclass learning assignments (“prepsets”) in successive runs of large-enrollment introductory Mechanics and Electricity & Magnetism courses. These courses were conducted in an active learning classroomformat with a weekly class sequence of lecture-lecture-recitation. The interactive online prepsets were delivered through the course LMS and comprised video, text, and problems with automated answer checkers and solutions. The first implementation assigned one weekly prepset due post-lecture, pre-recitation, while the second assigned two weekly prepsets due pre-lecture. We analyze student engagement and performance on the prepsets as well as the content and design of the assignments, comparing the two implementations. We also investigate effects of the prepsets on overall student engagement and performance in the courses. In light of this analysis and challenges encountered, we propose revisions for future prepset implementation.
      • Dynamic Simulation to Help With the Understanding of Electric Fields
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ted Mburu, Colleen Countryman

      • Type: Contributed
      • Because electric fields cannot be touched or seen, simulations are often utilized to build students' understanding of them by providing them with a visual experience of electric fields and the motion of test charges through them. The objective of the simulation is to improve students’ qualitative understanding of how electric fields are impacted by the charges around them by creating a dynamic representation of the electric field lines, field vectors, equipotential lines, and the voltage created by the charges on screen. After creating a charge configuration, students can observe the motion of test charges through the electric field. The simulation was built in JavaScript so it will run on most browsers on a computer or mobile device. The simulation is intended to be used by college students taking introductory physics courses. A study of the impact on students' understanding and attitude will be analyzed in future work.
      • QuarkNet Wednesday Webinars
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Spencer Pasero
      • Type: Contributed
      • In recognition of the need for additional opportunities for remote learning for teachers and students, QuarkNet established the QuarkNet Wednesday Webinar Series, a set of five talks from physicists and educators offered via Zoom webinar through May and early June. We will discuss our experience coordinating and moderating these sessions and share lessons learned.
      • Implementing smartpens to improve rapid feedback in a physics classroom
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yuri Piedrahita, N. Sanjay Rebello

      • Type: Contributed
      • Feedback is an essential element of formative assessment, which has been highlighted among the fundamental techniques to achieve the National Science Education Standards. Rapid feedback aims to scaffold students’ learning in the shortest amount of time possible; however, it is something difficult to accomplish in first-year introductory physics courses due to the usual large class size. The use of technology can ameliorate such limitations, becoming an alternative to offer students suitable and timely feedback in their learning process. This work implemented the use of smartpens to identify students’ struggles in real-time with problem-solving within a physics recitation for engineering students. The use of smartpens allows students to solve problems on paper handouts, which is typical of recitations, while simultaneously monitoring student performance electronically using tablet-PCs, resulting in timely and more effective feedback from facilitators.
      • Developing and Testing a New Educational App about Electric Fields
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Liana Rodelli, Colleen Countryman

      • Type: Contributed
      • The physics education and computer science researchers at Ithaca College collaborated to develop a mobile application to provide students with a dynamic experience studying electric fields, a notoriously difficult topic. This study is the first in a longitudinal study comparing the impacts of the mobile application and paired worksheet activity to other learning tools including a laptop simulation and a worksheet-only activity. Participants include health science majors enrolled in an algebra-based physics class. The normalized gain in performance on a diagnostic administered prior to and after interacting with one of the three activities was used to measure the impact of each activity on student understanding. Student attitude was measured using a questionnaire in the post-activity diagnostic. The results show students prefer laptop activities as physics learning aids and students in the two sections, mobile application and laptop simulation, produced higher average gains in learning than those in the worksheet-only section.
      • New York Times Warm Earth Physics Applications 2008-2020
      • PAR-D.02
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by john cise
      • Type: Contributed
      • For twelve years I have been using NYTimes articles on Global Warming to assist teaching fluids and heat concepts. NYTimes articles are pasted into word and edited to fit one page. Added are: graphics,introduction,questions,hints and answers to the standard printable word page. This presentation is at: http://CisePhysics.homestead.com/files/NYTOceanWarmingAAPTs2020.pdf 1000 NYTimes Physics concept applications are located at AAPT's ComPADRE site at: http://CisePhysics.homestead.com/files/NYTCisePhysics.pdf This physics and physical science resource site is listed at AAPT's ComPADRE and the AAPT's Physical Science Resource Center.
  • Exploring Virtual and Augmented Reality in Physics Education  

      • Modeling novel physics using virtual reality in introductory physics laboratories
      • PAR-G.02
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jared Canright, Suzanne Brahmia, Peter Shaffer

      • Type: Invited
      • Generating mathematical models of phenomena is central to the practice of physics. Since there is typically no physics in the introductory sequence for which a model doesn't already exist, most laboratory experiences are structured as hypothesis-testing experiments in which students are given a model to verify. As a part of the introductory lab transformation project at the University of Washington (UW) - informed by the Investigative Science Learning Environment learning system - the Physics Education Group has created an authentic model-generating learning opportunity. Using a virtual reality environment, students explore physical phenomena that do not exist in the real world (or Wikipedia). Students generate mathematical models describing these phenomena from scratch, applying reasoning skills similar to those used by research scientists. This talk will describe the development of the "artificial" phenomena, their implementation in UW introductory electromagnetism labs, and the labs' impact on students' learning and development of scientific reasoning.
      • Teaching 3D Physics Concepts with Augmented Reality
      • PAR-G.02
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nick Giordano, Michele McColgan, Graziano Vernizzi

      • Type: Contributed
      • Students find difficulty visualizing 3D concepts in our physics courses. In our introductory calculus-based physics and upper-level electricity and magnetism courses, students struggle to visualize electric and magnetic fields, electric flux, Gauss’s law, electromagnetic induction, three-dimensional integration, and the divergence theorem, to name a few of the E&M topics that are well suited for visualization using augmented reality. For example, when teaching Gauss’s law, the mathematical formalism tends to hide the geometrical meaning of Gauss’s law, more than explain it. Therefore, an AR hands-on visual representation can greatly help in rendering the concepts of flux through a surface or charge density in a given volume, so as to help students understand the physics behind it. In this poster presentation, we will demonstrate the AR applications and activities that we’ve developed and plan to use in our courses.
      • Designing and Assessing the Efficacy of VR Educational Games
      • PAR-G.02
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Mina Johnson-Glenberg
      • Type: Invited
      • Virtual Reality (VR) leverages two “profound affordances”: 1) presence and 2) the agency associated with manipulating content in 3D to explore multidimensional and spatial phenomena. At the Embodied Games lab at Arizona State University, we create VR content that uses presence to get the students’ undivided attention, and then we ensure that all content is interactive and embodied (via gesture and motion capture). Dr. Johnson-Glenberg will present two games and one AR application (designed with Vierya software). The first game is available at the Oculus Store for free and instructs in natural selection (called “Catch a Mimic”). She will present data on best uses of VR and learning gain differences between VR and 2D PC platforms. The second is a new game on Tuned Mass Dampers (think the Taipei 101 building). She will seek audience feedback on how to optimize the educational game for a physics and engineering lesson.
  • Finding and adapting IPLS materials from the Living Physics Portal  

      • Interactive Simulations of Equilibrium Problems on Human Body
      • PAR-D.09
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dan Liu
      • Type: Contributed
      • The curricula of interdisciplinary introductory physics courses for life science programs such as Physics of Sports, Physics of Human Body etc. have a big component of Kinetics in general. Equilibrium is one of the most important chapters with a variety of applications of fundamental physics knowledges including force analysis, Newton’s laws and the conditions of equilibrium for translation and rotation. In order to better engage students to learn statics, we start to develop interactive simulations of equilibrium problems on human body and implement the simulation activities in the course Physics of Human Body, which is mainly for students majoring in Physics Therapy, Health Sciences and Rehabilitation Sciences. A couple of the simulations will be shared in the presentation and later in Living Physics Portal.
      • Creating a Biomechanics Course for Future Occupational Therapists - Twice!
      • PAR-D.09
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by J. Caleb Speirs
      • Type: Invited
      • One week is not enough time to design an entire course, especially a course with unfamiliar subject matter. Yet many educators find themselves in similar or more daunting situations. This talk will describe two iterations of an introductory biomechanics course designed for undergraduates in the field of occupational therapy (OT). More importantly, it will also highlight the ways that the physics education research community aided the course design, both in pedagogical stance and in terms of specific activities and materials. The course itself leads students with no physics background and little math skills through basic mechanics and allows them to productively use and analyze biomechanical models of various "activities of daily living" (ADL's). Largely project based, the course draws from materials posted on the Living Physics Portal in addition to exposing students to published research in OT and asking them to blend their OT perspectives into the course content.
      • Adapting IPLS Materials for Large Enrollment, Algebra-based, Studio Courses
      • PAR-D.09
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brokk Toggerson
      • Type: Invited
      • Introductory physics for life science (IPLS) courses can vary wildly in sizes, pre-requisites, major distributions, and pedagogical frameworks. These variations mean some level of adaptation of found materials is almost always required. This talk will focus on the process of adapting materials from the IPLS Portal (and elsewhere) to a two-semester, algebra-based, studio-style IPLS sequence of large enrollment at University of Massachusetts Amherst. In this context, large enrollment means a single instructor, with some TA support, is responsible for two sections of 100 students each in the first semester, and for two sections of 250 students in the second. Therefore, scalability, while maintaining an active learning environment, is a key consideration. Other adaptations motivated by our large number of kinesiology majors, as well as differences arising from algebra- versus calculus-based courses will also be considered.
      • Adapting materials for a transferable IPLS studio course
      • PAR-D.09
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Xian Wu
      • Type: Invited
      • The University of Connecticut has initiated the transition of its calculus-based intro-physics courses from traditional lecture into interactive studio. Numerous materials have been newly developed or adapted to leverage studio classroom facility to benefit student learning. A mock-up IPLS studio course is taught in the 2020 summer semester with limited enrollment. We would like to share with the PER community the lessons we have learned through the transition so far.
  • Frontiers of Astronomy  

      • Astrobiology: Formation and Processing of Amino Acids in Space*
      • PAR-F.03
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Famiano, Richard Boyd, Toshitaka Kajino, Takashi Onaka, Yirong Mo

      • Type: Invited
      • The discovery of bio-molecules in meteorites with an excess of one chiral state has created one of the biggest questions in science today. That is, what is the origin of bio-molecular homochirality? Studies of this question are highly interdisciplinary, and while several phenomenological models exist, we examine the relationship between fundamental symmetries at the particle level and the macroscopic formation of bio-molecules. A model has been developed which couples fundamental interactions with the formation of molecular chirality. In this magneto-chiral model atomic nuclei bound in amino acids interact via the weak interaction in stellar environments. Nuclei are coupled to the molecular geometry (chirality) via the shielding tensor – the same interaction responsible for NMR identification. Interactions with leptons can then selectively destroy one chiral state over the other. Possible sites are proposed in which this model may exist. It may be possible to test the formation of chiral bio-molecules in space in a polarized electron beam experiment. Such an experiment will be discussed along with several problems and questions associated with it.
      • The Hunt for (Almost) Dark Galaxies
      • PAR-F.03
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lukas Leisman
      • Type: Invited
      • Are there galaxies that we can't see? The ALFALFA survey uses Arecibo Observatory, the largest fully functional radio telescope in the world, to search for (nearly) starless galaxies that emit radio waves. This talk will summarize the field of galaxy formation and evolution, present results from ALFALFA, and explore what these results tell us about how galaxies form. A special emphasis will be given to the contributions of student researchers to this work.
  • Gender  

      • Instructor and Student Gender's Effect on Performance in Introductory Courses
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Matthew Dew, Tatiana Erukhimova, Jonathan Perry, Lewis Ford, William Bassichis

      • Type: Contributed
      • Previous studies have shown evidence of a gender gap in performance in introductory physics courses for conceptual assessments, course grades, exams, and homework. This study explores the relation between a student’s gender and their performance, and perception of that performance, in both calculus-based and algebra-based introductory physics sequences at Texas A&M University. Investigation of student performance based on gender is done using analysis of variance on student midterm exam grades and final letter grades from multiple instructors’ courses from 2008-2018. Student perception of their performance and inclusion in the course was measured through a survey administered in fall 2019. We present results from both parts of this study to try to better understand differences in gendered performance in introductory physics sequences.
      • Attitudes and Approaches to Problem Solving: Gender and Instructional Method
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Melanie Good, Alex Maries, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • To examine the potential changes in attitudes and approaches to problem solving over a semester, we administered a previously validated Attitudes and Approaches to Problem Solving (AAPS) survey both at the beginning (pre) and at the end of instruction (post) in eight large enrollment calculus-based introductory physics classes at a large research university in the United States. We found that all classes exhibited a decline in score on the AAPS but that classes which involved significant use of evidence-based active engagement methods exhibited statistically significantly better scores on the AAPS survey at the end of the course. Equally importantly, unlike broader epistemological surveys, female students were found to exhibit less of a decline in AAPS scores than did their male counterparts in all classes and the AAPS scores were always higher for female students at the end of the course.
      • Understanding the Local Contexts for the Implementation of STEP UP Lessons
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Thomas Head, Raina Khatri, Zahra Hazari

      • Type: Contributed
      • After having implemented two lessons developed as part of the STEP UP project, five teachers were interviewed about their experiences using the materials in their classes. These teachers have unique backgrounds and teach in schools with different social and economic contexts. We triangulated the quantitative outcomes of their students with their interview reflections to determine how local context is associated with student outcomes, particularly students’ perceptions of the lessons and the post-high school physics intentions.
      • Supporting Gender Equity in the STEM Classroom
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lynn Jorgensen
      • Type: Contributed
      • The fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) have grown in the past twenty years, while the proportion of women in these fields has not seen the same growth. This article researches how inquiry-based instructional approaches canbetter support gender-equity in classrooms. It will look at the effects that confidence, group work, and Socratic questioning have on women in STEM courses, and how small changes in instruction can have large impacts on the experiences women have in STEM courses.
      • Impact of Women in Physics lesson on students’ bias perceptions
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Conner Kelley, Keely Scott, Robynne Lock, Zahra Hazari, Geoff Potvin

      • Type: Contributed
      • The STEP UP Project is focused on challenging societal beliefs surrounding the roles of women in physics and helping interested young women achieve their goals to become physicists. The movement includes many high school physics teachers across the country. Of many teachers recruited to implement the STEP UP lessons, three returned student essays associated with the Women in Physics lesson. Students wrote essays before and after a class discussion, and we compared the students’ pre-assignment response with those of the post-assignment and noted changes, if any, in the students’ thoughts on the discouragement of women from studying physics. We compared students’ shift in beliefs before and after the lesson and constructed diagrams showing changes between the pre- and post-assignment.
      • STEP UP: Implementation Factors Promoting Student Future Physics Intentions
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Raina Khatri, T. Blake Head, Zahra Hazari, Geoff Potvin, Laird Kramer

      • Type: Contributed
      • As part of the STEP UP project, we developed and tested lessons that help teachers encourage women to pursue physics degrees in college. To understand how the impacts of these lessons varied between different student sub-populations, we carefully investigated three different classroom/teacher cases. We drew upon multiple sources of data collected from both teachers and students including teacher interviews, teacher and student open response surveys, and student artifacts from the lessons. This talk will present findings that identify factors that are potentially important to the successful implementation of the lessons, and the implications for how to better support female students.
      • Teaching Women's History in Physics
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Beth Parks
      • Type: Contributed
      • Much effort has been expended to uncover forgotten contributions by women in physics and publicize examples of female physicists to students, largely to help female students see themselves in physics. However, the physicists who formulated the ideas taught in college courses were almost all men, and women’s absence from these most important roles will be noted by students. If we don’t acknowledge and address their absence, then female students won’t feel fully supported in their decision to become physicists, since they’ll see women only in less influential roles. We need to discuss the social context in which these most influential physicists worked. Since the necessary combination of educational opportunities, family support, social acceptance, financial means, and employment opportunities were available to a much smaller fraction of women than men, it’s no surprise that a small fraction of discoveries were made by women. This talk will present a brief sampling of history, looking at the opportunities of three important male physicists--James Clerk Maxwell, Robert Millikan, and Albert Einstein--and comparing them to their female peers. Just a few minutes of class time are needed to discuss this disparity, and also open the door to discussions of current social conditions.
      • The Challenges and Joys of being a Physicist Parent
      • PAR-C.02
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sarah Phan-Budd, Ashley Carter, Emily Rice, Heather Whitney, Laura Tucker

      • Type: Contributed
      • While the dearth of women in academic STEM positions has long been known (1) , a recent study found that 43% of women and 23% of men leave full time STEM jobs after their first child (2) . This talk addresses the challenges of maintaining an academic physics career while parenting young children. We are a group of mid-career physicists, in an AAPT-sponsored E-Alliance mutual mentoring group, with ten young children between the five of us. We review the efficacy of programs from our various universities, professional organizations, and research collaborations for parents with small children. We make recommendations for how policies and programs can be improved and expanded. Finally, we suggest personal strategies and tips for surviving and thriving as academic physicists with small children.
  • General Relativity in the High School Classroom  

      • General Relativity in the High School Classroom
      • PAR-D.04B
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Charlie Payne
      • Type: Invited
      • Given current cutting-edge science that is in the news, from Gravitational Waves to Particle Physics to GPS, Relativity has a place in the high school physics classroom. I will discuss the Why, Where, and How of putting General Relativity into the classroom. With activities from sources such as the Perimeter Institute, OzGrav, and LIGO, students can delve into a conceptual model of General Relativity in a variety of ways beyond reading and videos. These will include hands-on as well as VR and AR activities that have worked in my own classroom setting.
      • Introducing General Relativity via Hands-on Activities
      • PAR-D.04B
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Damian Pope
      • Type: Invited
      • General relativity is one of the most modern, powerful, and beautiful theories in all of physics. Yet, it's also complex and rarely taught in high school physics. This session will share some cheap, simple, hands-on activities for introducing high schoolstudents to general relativity. Building on what students already know about Newtonian gravity, the activities including modelling curved spacetime with stretchy fabric and tape and introducing the equivalence principle by dropping a bottle of water into freefall.
  • Get the Facts Out: Changing the Conversation Around Physics Teacher Recruitment  

      • Get the Facts Out: Resource updates and recent research results
      • PAR-C.03
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Wendy Adams, Savannah Logan, Jared Breakall

      • Type: Invited
      • The Get the Facts Out (GFO) project is a joint effort between four national societies and the Colorado School of Mines to change the conversation around grade 7-12 physics, chemistry, and math teaching careers. We have developed the first ever set of research-based, user-tested STEM teacher recruitment materials. To do this and to better understand best practices around recruiting math and science teachers, GFO has a rigorous research arm. Our research includes the study of both student and faculty perceptions of the teaching profession including development of instruments to measure these. Finally, to measure the effectiveness of the project, we are engaging in a large-scale longitudinal study that includes annual collection of qualitative data from eighteen departments and quantitative data from another 60 departments. Here we will share resource updates and recent highlights of research results. This work is supported by NSF DUE-1821710 & 1821462.
      • My biggest project evaluation challenge: Get the Facts Out
      • PAR-C.03
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stephanie Chasteen, Wendy Adams

      • Type: Invited
      • Get the Facts Out (GFO) is a complex and ambitious social change initiative. It involves a huge number of people at national scale, across different levels of the system. As external evaluator, it is my (rather difficult) job to evaluate the success of the project, and help it to improve. I will describe my use of “developmental evaluation,” where results are intended to provide timely feedback to a rapidly evolving complex project. The evaluation has also been guided by the project’s theory of change, and thus addresses questions such as “how well prepared are champions to undertake the work,” and “are campaigns faithful to the principles of GFO”? I will discuss the decentralized, embedded evaluation measures we are using (including a Fidelity of Implementation rubric, activity tracking forms, chat-bots, and surveys). This talk will be of interest to people with an interest in program design and/or project evaluation and assessment.
      • “So, What Does a Typical Mid-career Teacher Actually Make Anyway?”
      • PAR-C.03
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Drew Isola, Wendy Adams, Allison Costley

      • Type: Invited
      • It turns out that answering the above question is not an easy thing to do. In the GFO project* we are defining a ‘mid-career teacher’ as a high school teacher in a public school district in the U.S. who has about 15 years experience and has a Masters degree or a Masters plus some number of graduate credits. Finding enough data on the salaries earned by such a teacher is a painstaking process of accessing salary tables district by district and looking up these values. The GFO project has been trying to collect useful data on this topic from a wide range of district types and geographic locations. This talk will present the methods used in this time consuming quest, some of our current results and how these salary values compare with cost of living values and median incomes for those same districts. This comparison more accurately reflects these districts’ affordability for the teachers that work there.
  • Graduate Education in US- Thinking about Admissions, Diversity, Content Knowledge, and Institutions  

      • Using Deliberate Innovation Methodologies to Enable Graduate Student Success
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Erika Cowan*, Michael Schatz, Emily Alicea-Munoz, Edwin Greco

      • Type: Contributed
      • It is a given that not everyone who starts their PhD in physics will complete it. That being said, there are people who have the great potential of being competent and able researchers that leave without the PhD. Using techniques from the Georgia Tech Center for Deliberate Innovation, based in developmental psychology and behavioral economics, we are working to see more clearly what might be getting in the way of competent, motivated students who fail to complete their PhD.
      • Review of Physics Education in USA and Indian Colleges
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Pooja Kasam, Ramadevi Kasam, Mallikarjunarao Kasam

      • Type: Contributed
      • Background: In the present paper, we are reviewing the interest statistics in the field of physics at the undergraduate level. Materials/Methods: We reviewed the data from various credible sources regarding information from the past three decades and analyzed this data. Results/Discussion: We reviewed the independent variables such as the number of students majoring in physics during their junior and senior years in their undergraduate degree. Another independent variable is examining the undergraduate graduation rate with a major in physics. In the present work, we reviewed and reported the data into 3 segments: 1975-90, 1990-2005, and 2005 – 2020. Data was collected from different reporting sources of all Indian and U.S. universities. Statistical analysis was conducted on this data and the results were discussed.
      • Improving the Content and Pedagogical Content Knowledge of Physics Graduate Students Using Physics Education Research

      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Emily Marshman, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Invited
      • Many physics graduate students face the unique challenge of being both students and teachers concurrently. To succeed in these roles, they must develop both physics content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK). Our research has involved improving both the content knowledge and PCK of first-year graduate students. To improve their content knowledge, we have focused on improving their conceptual understanding of materials covered in upper-level undergraduate courses since our earlier investigations suggest that many graduate students struggle with developing a conceptual understanding of quantum mechanics. Learning tools, such as the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorials (QuILTs), have been successful, e.g., in helping graduate students improve their understanding of Dirac notation and single photon behavior in the context of a Mach-Zehnder Interferometer. In addition, we have been enhancing our semester long course focusing on the professional development of the teaching assistants (TAs) by including research-based activities. Implications of these interventions for the preparation of graduate students will be discussed.
      • How do undergraduate institutions matter for physics GRE cutoff scores?
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nils Mikkelsen, Nicholas Young, Marcos Caballero

      • Type: Contributed
      • Despite limiting access to applicants from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, the practice of using hard or soft GRE cutoff scores in physics graduate program admissions is still a popular method for reducing the pool of applicants. The present study considers whether the undergraduate institutions of applicants have any influence on the admissions process by modelling a physics GRE cutoff score with application data from admissions offices of five Midwestern universities. Two distinct approaches based on inferential and predictive modelling are conducted. While there is some disagreement regarding the relative importance between features, the two approaches largely agree that to include institutional information significantly aids the analysis. Both models identify cases where the institutional effects are comparable to factors of known importance such as gender and undergraduate GPA. As the results are stable across many cutoff scores, we advocate against the practice of employing physics GRE cutoff scores in admissions.
      • “Optional” General and Physics GRE Requirements: The Impact on Prospective Graduate Students

      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Lindsay Owens, Benjamin Zwickl, Casey Miller

      • Type: Contributed
      • Graduate program’s reported Physics GRE requirements, recommended minimum scores, and previous cohort score averages influence students’ application decisions. In recent years, the test-optional language of No Required Minimum and GRE Optional requirements has muddied the waters for prospective applicants, particularly for women. In this qualitative study, 60 graduate students (27-F; 31-M; 2-DND) from 24 different graduate programs were asked how they decided where to (and not to) apply to graduate school. Male and female students were equally likely to apply to graduate programs that stated No Required Minimum or GRE Optional language on their admission requirements webpage. This talk will highlight how Physics GRE requirements influenced students’ decisions on where to apply to graduate school and how students interpreted GRE-optional phrases when submitting their application materials. Supported by NSF-1633275
      • Guided group work and student understanding in graduate-level physics
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Christopher Porter, Andrew Heckler

      • Type: Invited
      • Guided group work (GGW) has been effectively used in undergraduate physics classrooms for years. Given the substantial selection effects between graduate and undergraduate populations, it is an open question whether group work might be useful at the graduate level. At The Ohio State University, GGW sessions have been developed and run over the past five years for each core course, but this work will focus on quantum mechanics. Students were given pretests and posttests that consist of some calculations, but mostly of conceptual questions. We will discuss trends in student performance across four years (~ 160 students), using many assessment questions covering various standard quantum mechanics content areas. We will note some prevalent misconceptions. We find a statistically significant effect of GGW attendance on student performance on related conceptual questions, even many weeks after instruction. Potential confounding effects are discussed, including student self-selection into treatment groups.
      • Why Physics Doctoral Students do not Persist?
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Diana Sachmpazidi, Charles Henderson

      • Type: Contributed
      • Low retention rates in physics PhD programs are an unpleasant reality. There have been many efforts to study and report doctoral attrition and most studies have focused on students’ attributes and mentoring relationships. However, not much work has been focused on examining the interconnection between individual attributes and departmental practices. Last year, using survey data from 19 physics graduate programs, we identified 31 students that were not intending to complete their degree. About half of these students were enrolled in two institutions. In this talk, we use survey and interview data to describe factors related to why these students did not complete their doctoral programs. For example, students who dropped out often described feeling that they did not belong in the department and that they needed to figure things out on their own. We discuss how these results can inform policymakers’ decisions towards improving retention of doctoral students.
      • Graduate Program Reform at the University of Utah
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Pearl Sandick, Ramón Barthelemy, Jordan Gerton

      • Type: Contributed
      • Understanding and supporting graduate education policies and practices is critical to the success of future physicists and astronomers and to supplying well-trained science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals to the US workforce. As such, it is essential that graduate programs study and promote practices that support equity and inclusion. During the 2018-19 academic year, admissions into the Physics and Astronomy graduate program at the University of Utah was halted while a complete overhaul of all aspects of the program was initiated by the Department. The program reform included the recruitment and admissions process, orientation and teaching assistant training, advising practices and other student support, the curriculum, and the exam structure. This presentation will outline our process of change and highlight results from the first year of new policy implementations.
      • The Physics GRE does not help “overlooked” applicants
      • PAR-E.09
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nicholas Young, Marcos Caballero

      • Type: Contributed
      • One argument for keeping the physics GRE is that it can help applicants who might otherwise be missed in the admissions process stand out. In this work, we evaluate whether this claim is supported by physics graduate school admissions decisions. We used admissions data from five PhD-granting physics departments over a 2-year period to see how the fraction of applicants admitted varied based on their physics GRE scores. We compared applicants with low GPAs to applicants with higher GPAs and applicants from large undergraduate universities to applicants from smaller undergraduate universities. We find that for applicants who might otherwise have been missed (e.g. have a low GPA or attended a small school) having a high physics GRE score did not seem to increase the applicant’s chances of being admitted to the schools. However, having a low physics GRE score seemed to penalize otherwise competitive applicants.
  • High School  

      • Analyzing Classroom Discussions on the Underrepresentation of Women in Physics*
      • PAR-D.04A
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Archibeque, Geoff Potvin, Zahra Hazari, Raina Khatri

      • Type: Contributed
      • Engaging in discussions about the underrepresentation of women have been found to increase women's interest in physical science-related careers and improve their physics identities. Understanding deeply these conversations and how they develop may offer insight into the ways in which teachers can support women in physics classrooms. To this end, we recorded two different sections of an experienced high school physics teacher while implementing a lesson about the underrepresentation of women in physics developed as part of the STEP UP project. In this talk, we will present a comparative analysis of students’ argumentation during these two classes.
      • Modeling in Michigan: Decade Long, Statewide Program on Modeling Instruction
      • PAR-D.04A
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Don Pata, Mike Gallagher

      • Type: Contributed
      • The Modeling in Michigan program provides workshops to Michigan physics and physical science teachers. It is a comprehensive statewide program conceived and organized by the MiSTEM Network and others. Starting with the carefully designed frameworks provided by Arizona State University, we enhanced the workshops by ensuring alignment to the Next Generation Science Standards, using newer scaffolds that support productive academic classroom discourse and by appending PBL modules on alternative energy and connected and automated vehicle technology. Participants will learn how we grew this program to one that has engaged over 1200 teachers, and receive powerful tools that enhance instructional effectiveness.
      • We Love Physics: Infusing Your AP Physics C Curriculum with Service Learning
      • PAR-D.04A
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Eric Walters
      • Type: Contributed
      • As poet George Herbert once noted, “In doing, we learn.” Service learning offers students the opportunity to engage in “a wide range of experiences, which often benefits the community, while also advancing the goals of a given curriculum.” In this interactive session, participants will discuss the mechanisms and strategies for infusing service learning opportunities into the AP Physics C: Mechanics curriculum to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of advanced physics concepts in a real-world context. We will also discuss how students planned, designed, and created walkSTEMs, customized, interactive physics-based learning experiences for Central Park to stimulate inquiry and spark curiosity. Participants will review student projects, and brainstorm other meaning service learning projects for physics. You’ll also hear from students as they discuss the benefits and challenges of this new learning model.
  • Impact of Evidence-based Active Engagement Pedagogies on Student Learning  

      • Toward a Neurobiological Basis for Understanding Learning in Physics Courses
      • PAR-G.03
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jessica Bartley, Katherine Bottenhorn, Matthew Sutherland, Eric Brewe, Angelia Laird

      • Type: Invited
      • There is a rich literature investigating the impact of physics pedagogy on student learning. Significantly less, however, is understood about the fundamental neural mechanisms that accompany learning across physics classroom environments. In this study we provide the first neurobiological evidence demonstrating physics instructional approach yields large-scale reorganization in student’s brain networks. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to measure physics-related brain activity in University students and probed for differences resulting from a semester of Lecture or Modeling physics classroom instruction. Students underwent pre- and identical post-instruction fMRI sessions where we assessed their brain activity during physics reasoning and identified regions more engaged post- relative to pre-instruction. We describe key project findings, including consistent brain activity associated with physics-related cognition, evidence that different knowledge organizations are paralleled by differential engagement of physics-related brain networks, and the characterization of neurobiological changes associated with classroom learning across contrasting pedagogies.
      • Kinematic Robots Foster Student Inquiry by Optimizing Student Feedback
      • PAR-G.03
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Matthew Greenwolfe
      • Type: Invited
      • In this talk, I describe the design of a robotic kinematic apparatus and a curriculum designed to make use of its unique features to shape the inquiry process. Students program a robot by drawing kinematic graphs on a computer, and the robot precisely and reliably produces the motion, providing immediate visual feedback. Preliminary results support the hypothesis that a physics apparatus precise and reliable enough to serve as a control of error minimizes the need for teacher intervention and improves student absorption in inquiry as well as learning outcomes. The importance of optimal feedback inertia emerged from the study. The turn-around time of several minutes to analyze a mistake and test a new idea encourages students to learn from their mistakes and really think things through.
      • Active Engagement and Real Applications: Ohio State’s Honors Robotics Project
      • PAR-G.03
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Kathleen Harper
      • Type: Invited
      • The Fundamentals of Engineering for Honors program at The Ohio State University actively engages first-year students contemplating engineering in realistic engineering experiences. This helps solidify their understanding of what engineering is, the kindsof activities engineers engage in, and the elements of engineering design. The most popular second-semester course includes a substantial robotics project which includes planning, budgeting, documentation, teamwork, and of course the technical aspects of designing, programming, constructing, and testing a robot. This course is now in its 25th year. Instructors have based course refinements on results in the science education literature and also assessed the impact of course modifications on the student and teaching assistant experiences. This presentation will give an overview of the project and share multiple examples of the varied ways students are made to be active in their learning process.
      • Race to Improve Student Understanding of Uncertainty: Using LEGO Race Cars in the Physics Lab

      • PAR-G.03
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Maria Parappilly
      • Type: Invited
      • A novel method is proposed for how LEGO race cars can help students increase their understanding of uncertainty and motivate them in physics labs. The intervention was developed for students in an introductory physics topic with a high early drop-out rate. This intervention was extended into the intro level physics topic the next year, for comparison and evaluation. A qualitative survey of the students was taken to gain insight into their perception of the incorporation of LEGO into physics labs. In this talk, I will discuss the results of the study and how variations in the delivery yielded better learning outcomes. We subsequently adapted the delivery of the LEGO labs for a large Engineering Mechanics cohort. For Engineering, the findings show that LEGO physics was instrumental in teaching students ideas of measurement and uncertainty, improving their lab reporting skills, and was a key factor in reducing the early attrition rate.
  • Innovations in Teaching Space Science and Astronomy  

      • Scaffolds to Support Student Learning: Judging Astronomical Explanations
      • PAR-F.03B
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Janelle Bailey, Doug Lombardi, Timothy Klavon, Archana Dobaria

      • Type: Invited
      • Critique and evaluation of scientific explanations has been underemphasized in K-12 science classrooms (NRC, 2012), and as a result, college students may still need assistance in learning how to make such evaluations about astronomy concepts. The Model-Evidence Link (MEL) diagram is an instructional scaffold that promotes students to critically evaluate alternative explanations and increase their ability to understand complex scientific concepts. Relatedly, the build-a-MEL (baMEL) allows student agency in selecting from provided choices to make and use a new MEL diagram. We have created two astronomy-related activities: a MEL about the Moon's formation and a baMEL on the origins of the Universe. Research on student learning about the Moon’s formation and about the Universe’s origins, as well as on students’ ability to be critically evaluative, is ongoing. These activities are NSF-sponsored and freely available to instructors. The activities are appropriate for undergraduate non-science majors, future teachers, and high school students.
      • Undergraduate Astronomy Majors: Curriculum Topics, Approaches, and Needs
      • PAR-F.03B
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kimberly Coble, Janelle Bailey, Colin Wallace, Rica French, Karen Masters

      • Type: Invited
      • The field of astronomy education research has made great strides in basic research, assessment, and development of active learning materials for general education (“ASTRO 101”) courses. However, very little has been done in the realm of astronomy majors.We have been working with the American Astronomical Society’s Education Committee to create a survey and hold forum discussions for instructors interested in the undergraduate majors’ curriculum to identify current topics, practices and needs. We report preliminary results and invite members of the AAPT community to provide input. Our eventual goal is to use this information to strategically guide research and curriculum development for undergraduate astronomy majors.
      • Space Science, Physics Education, and the NASA/AAPT Collaboration
      • PAR-F.03B
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ramon Lopez
      • Type: Invited
      • All industrialized countries are facing the same problem of declining student interest in pursuing STEM careers. In physics education, the typical response is to examine issues of appropriate and effective pedagogy, as well as gender and cultural inclusion (both in and out of the classroom). While it is appropriate that the physics community examine what it can do to make physics education more accessible to a greater diversity of students, there are some boundary conditions concerning student interest and motivation that need to be considered in parallel. In this presentation I will examine some issues related to student interest in science, and how the broad student interest in space science can be leveraged to recruit and especially retain students in STEM majors. NASA has established a National Space Science Education center that is partnering with AAPT to capitalize on the leverage that student interest in space science provides. I will present the current status of the effort, plus outline how the AAPT team is launching a project to create a network of space science educators in 2-yr colleges, in collaboration with NASA’s Space Grant program.
  • Integrating Computation into High School Physics  

      • The Experience of Integrating Computation into the Physics Classroom
      • PAR-C.04
      • Sun 07/19, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Julie Bennett
      • Type: Invited
      • Integrating computation into the classroom has been an uncharted journey; from learning to code at a week long seminar to encouraging students in the classroom to interpret code and solve problems. Gathering information gained through practice and discussion, I introduced my students to vpython using trinket. Programming activities ranged from moving and creating shapes to using the program to confirm physics homework challenges. The results have been varied as I learn to understand how quickly (or not) students pick up the logic flow of programming. Exposing students to the world of coding is valuable in that no matter where and what they end up doing in their lives, they will be exposed to some need for programming. As an experienced teacher, but not an experienced programmer, I am a great model for “anyone can do this”.
      • Integrating Computation in Science Across Michigan
      • PAR-C.04
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Irving, Marcos Caballero, David Stroupe, Niral Shah

      • Type: Invited
      • Integrating Computation into Science Across Michigan (ICSAM) is an NSF funded project that focuses on supporting teachers who wish to incorporate computational activities into their physics classroom in an equitable way. Teachers from across Michigan come to MSU for one week during the summer to participate in a hands-on computational workshop. The emphasis of the workshop is to build up teachers' efficacy and ability with computation while also focusing on encouraging the teachers to consider the impact on equity that computation can have in the physics classroom. Teachers design a computational activity that they intend to use in their class while also having access to the array of computational activities designed by the other teachers. The teachers then participate in bi-monthly workdays that the ICSAM team tailor to the challenges and needs of the teachers. In this presentation, we report on the workshop design and impacts of the ICSAM project.
      • Testing the STEMcoding Curriculum in an Intense Two Week Course
      • PAR-C.04
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Chris Orban
      • Type: Contributed
      • The STEMcoding project (http://youtube.com/c/STEMcoding) has developed a number of high school level “Physics of Video Games” coding activities that are fusion of PhET-like web interactives and traditional coding activities. A crucial question is whetherthese activities have an impact on student conceptual physics knowledge. The curriculum was tested in an intensive two-week course at a STEM high school in Columbus, Ohio in January 2020. I briefly overview assessment results from that effort, including what we learned, how the assessments will be improved, and how teachers can participate in the research side of the STEMcoding project. I will also give an update on efforts to develop coding activities that allow students to simulate objects in direct motion videos, and other improvements to our suite of activities.
  • International Meet-up  

      • International Meet-up
      • STPAR-13
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kathleen Ann Falconer
      • Type: Event
  • Introductory Courses II  

      • Agency Building and Early Research Exposure: A Study of the Indian Undergraduate Science Education Programs

      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Deepa Chari, Deepika Bansal, Savita Lagade

      • Type: Contributed
      • Undergraduate research provides students with opportunities to positively perceive their association with discipline through agentic experiences, and thereby fostering the disciplinary identity building. This study explores students’ experiences of participating in a two-week long ‘chemistry research exposure camp’ in India, attended by approximately 50 students every year. Students participate in a short proto-research project during the camp, additionally, they are provided guidance on core topics in chemistry and laboratory skills throughout. This study will discuss students' (n=15) overall perceptions of participation in the camp including their self-reported accounts of the emergence of agentic personalities during this camp.
      • Student-driven projects in introductory physics for life sciences
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kathleen Hinko
      • Type: Contributed
      • BLiSS Physics is an introductory calculus-based course for life science majors at Michigan State University. The course uses modeling instruction and weaves biological applications and computation throughout. In this talk I will report on efforts to include student-directed projects into the course alongside other structures such as investigations, formal lab reports, and problem-solving. Students were asked to pursue independent study on some aspect of introductory physics content, including taking a historical approach to physics, considering current research, investigating phenomena in everyday life, connecting to other disciplines, and creating an act of personal expression. I will show examples of student work and consider how this approach was successful in facilitating agency and affect as well as generating a host of new physics models for future instruction.
      • Students’ visual strategies during physics line-graph problems
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stefan Kuechemann, Sebastian Becker, Jochen Kuhn

      • Type: Contributed
      • Graphs form an integral part during STEM education and the understanding of graphs is essential for the interpretation of data, critical thinking and reasoning in physics. Different previous works have shown that students struggle with specific difficulties, such as a confusion of slope and height, interpreting changes in height and changes in slope and the area underneath a curve. In this work we use eye tracking to study the question how the students' conceptual understanding of the slope and area concept is linked to the visual attention to different areas of a graph. Using machine learning and different gaze-based metrics, the eye-tracking data reveals characteristic visual strategies during solving of quantitative slope and area problems. The results allow the optimization of classifying correct and incorrect answers and the identification of underlying students’ difficulties.
      • Physics Learning Goals versus AAPS Survey Results: Life Science Majors
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Mason
      • Type: Contributed
      • The Attitudes and Approaches to Problem Solving (AAPS) Survey has been used to analyze students in introductory calculus-based physics, introductory math-based astronomy, upper division/graduate-level physics, as well as Turkish students in high school and introductory university physics. In this study, post-test survey results from introductory algebra-based physics course sections in 2019 and 2020 will be checked for statistical relationship with the following variables: 1) students’ self-reported learning goals in introductory algebra-based physics courses; 2) students’ choice of major (in particular, life science majors dominate the student population). From prior studies regarding these two variables, it is anticipated that students that express a mastery learning goal (as opposed to a performance learning goal or otherwise) may have more expert-like views than other students; discussion will focus on the accuracy of this statement and potential explanations for results.
      • Building Models of Biological Systems in an IPLS Course
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dawn Meredith, Edward Redish

      • Type: Contributed
      • There is agreement that being able to use, build, and/or evaluate models of biological systems is an important outcome for students in an IPLS course. We describe three biological systems (polyphonic overtone singing, sap moving up trees, and counter current exchanges) that are explicable (at least to first order) using introductory physics ideas. We share our “expert” models of these systems and consider how we could scaffold student development of these models.
      • Who Wins This Race?
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Carl Mungan
      • Type: Contributed
      • Two wheeled carts are identical except that one has its wheels taped so that it slides on them with kinetic friction. The other cart rolls frictionlessly. Both carts are placed at the bottom of identical side-by-side rails and propelled up them using identical spring launchers. The carts turn around and return to their starting location. Which gets back first? Or is it a tie? Video of an experimental demonstration will be shown, along with theory and computer simulations, to explain the interesting results.
      • A Direct Comparison Between Multiple Choice and Free Response Problems
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dean Richardson
      • Type: Contributed
      • Introductory Physics for Life Sciences can be challenging classes to teach. These tend to be large classes and therefore grading exams can be very time consuming. We have been experimenting with breaking a test problem into five multiple-choice questions. The greatest drawback from this is that the student is guided through the problem without having to figure out all the steps necessary to reach the answer. It is not ideal for all problems, but we considered using it in place of some problems and wanted to see how much better students did on problems graded multiple choice compared to the normal free-response (constructed response) problems. This study makes a direct comparison. We found that students, on average, score 16.9% +/- 3.6% higher on problems graded multiple choice versus free response.
      • Relativity on Rotated Graph Paper: Diagrams for the Muon Experiment
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Roberto Salgado
      • Type: Contributed
      • We analyze the Muon Experiment problem in Special Relativity using the author's Relativity on Rotated Graph Paper. After briefly introducing our method to visualize tickmarks on a spacetime diagram, we show how to calculate graphically using the countingof ticks and simple algebra. Using a simpler numerical example, we construct the diagram for the muon problem. We interpret the situation in the lab frame and in the muon frame. Finally, we use the more realistic values to obtain the standard numerical results. With more motivation for students, we feel that this approach can be used in an introductory algebra-based physics course.
      • Smooth Transition to Concept-Focused Mechanics, Covering Concepts in Parallel
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Peter Schwartz, Jennifer Klay, Owen Staveland, Dean Stocker

      • Type: Contributed
      • Parallel Pedagogy simultaneously introduces and develops the four mechanics concepts of Momentum, Energy, Dynamics, and Kinematics. We report on how our free, online comprehensive resources supported a first-time mechanics instructor to smoothly adopt this pedagogy. These resources include 100 public videos and a free online textbook/workbook, both of which are interactive through student access via PlayPosit and Perusall, respectively. The flipped format and online interactive resources are also ideally suited for conversion to virtual instruction with Zoom class meetings facilitating peer instruction and relationship-building. Student acceptance of this new model is built by transparently motivating practices with physics education literature and openly sharing the student adaptation experience. We’ll show some positive learning outcomes. Consistent with this learning model, before our presentation please prepare (but come anyway if you can’t): 1) See the video of our model for learning physics: https://api.playposit.com/go/share/225308/32670/0/0/Different-Way-to-Learn-Physics 2) Look over the most recent class: https://canvas.calpoly.edu/courses/22072
      • An Ethnographic Approach to Understanding Informal Physics
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bryan Stanley, Dena Izadi, Kathleen Hinko

      • Type: Contributed
      • We are continuing a nationwide effort to develop a systemic understanding of the landscape of informal physics using an organizational theory perspective. We have collected surveys and interviews with facilitators, but this information is only from the perspective of the faculty or physics student leaders and does not tell us about the social dynamics within each program. Thus, to complement these data, we need to observe informal physics events as they occur. In this talk, we will discuss our strategy for visits to program sites to observe social interactions between program participants as well as programmatic details in action. We report on an initial site visit to a physics open house outreach event, where we took field-notes and conducted formal and informal interviews with participating personnel members. Here, we discuss findings from applying an organizational framework to the site visit data and challenges we encountered in the data collection process.
      • Presenting Physics Concepts via Head-Fake Learning
      • PAR-F.08
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dan Young, Justin Hadad

      • Type: Contributed
      • Head-fake learning (“HFL”) is a form of teaching material wherein the students do not realize the form or complexity of what they are learning. This occurs primarily when the mechanism through which the material is taught makes the students think they are learning something entirely different, i.e. how to succeed in Minute to Win It style mini-games instead of learning projectile motion. We discuss how we utilized HFL to present introductory physics and mathematical principles in a newly designed course at UNC entitled Game Show Theory, which uses game show structure and optimal play as a driving motivator. In addition, we will present examples of student work and testimonials regarding how they interacted with the course (and it’s HFL methodology) and will discuss small-scale game show demonstrations which teach physics concepts with minimal cost.
  • Introductory Labs/Apparatus  

      • Measuring the speed of sound with 3 technologies
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Alan Bates
      • Type: Contributed
      • The author applies 3 different technologies to measure the speed of sound in air: a. Pasco motion sensor with Capstone software; b. Arduino board with ultrasonic distance sensor; c. Phyphox, sonar-timing, smart phone app. Each technique offers a particular learning challenge and experience with a common outcome. With the different technologies, there is greater access to the experiment be it at home or in the school lab. Each of the experiments naturally give rise to open-ended investigations related to the speed of sound.
      • Inexpensive Muon Detectors
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ian Bearden
      • Type: Contributed
      • We have built and used a number of fairly inexpensive muon detectors using Silicon photomultipliers to collect light produced by the interaction of muons with material. The examples which will be discussed are based on coincidence measurements in scintillator plates and Cherenkov detectors, both water and plastic. In all cases, data acquisition is performed using Digilent Analog Discovery 2 digital oscilloscopes. Data analysis is performed in Jupyter notebook. Finally, we will discuss how such detectors can be used in both outreach and educational contexts.
      • Integrating Laboratory and Computation: An Adjustable Physical Pendulum
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ernest Behringer, Steven Temple

      • Type: Contributed
      • Mechanics provides many opportunities for integrating computation into physics curricula. We have developed different versions of an adjustable physical pendulum that can help students learn and apply rotational motion concepts while achieving many of the learning outcomes described in the AAPT recommendations for the laboratory curriculum and for computational physics. Because these pendula undergo large amplitude oscillations, they are difficult to investigate analytically. Instead, students can computationally model the experimental data they obtain with these pendula using spreadsheets or structured language programs to better understand the underlying mechanics, and determine whether different dissipation mechanisms are active while the pendulum ‘rings down’. We describe the construction and use of these pendula and the results that can be obtained.
      • They're smarter than us: Algebra-based learning assistants in calculus-based labs
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Samuel Engblom, Mats Selen

      • Type: Contributed
      • Introductory physics labs at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign make use of Undergraduate Learning Assistants (LAs) to assist with the implementation of reformed lab activities. As the reformed lab program has been scaled up to include a greaterselection of introductory courses, the high initial demand for LAs in calculus-based lab sections has led to expert LAs (ELAs) from the algebra-based introductory physics courses being recruited to teach in lab sections beyond their course experience. In this presentation, the attitudes and traits of the ELAs that choose to make the jump to the calculus-based introductory physics labs will be discussed, along with the provisions made within the lab course to aid with the transition.
      • Supporting student understanding of linear fitting with non-identical uncertainties
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Saima Farooq, Mary Jane Yeckley, MacKenzie Stetzer

      • Type: Contributed
      • Students in introductory physics laboratories often do not recognize the importance of estimating uncertainties – sometimes dismissing it as busy work. In addition, they often struggle with accounting for uncertainties in their measurements when reporting their findings. Here, we describe the implementation of a new laboratory activity in the calculus-based introductory physics sequence, which was informed by an emerging body of research on laboratory instruction. This laboratory activity focuses on the impact of measurement uncertainties on the construction of a linear best-fit model, particularly when the data points have non-identical uncertainties. In this talk, we will also share preliminary results from pre- and post-laboratory assessments.
      • Measuring the speed of light: Teaching statistics through experiments
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Rebekka Frøystad, Ian Gardner Bearden

      • Type: Contributed
      • We have developed a lab for measuring the speed of light (c) aimed at high school students. Light is emitted from an LED lamp to a beamsplitter, where part of the light is reflected to a monitor. The rest hits a reflector and upon returning to the beamsplitter is reflected again and measured by another monitor. By increasing the distance between the beamsplitter and the reflector, the time difference between the signals can be measured and c extrapolated from performing a linear regression on the measurements. The students see first hand the importance of making consistent measurements and gain experience in handling electronic equipment. Usually, individual groups of high school students measure values of c deviating by about 10-30% from the accepted value. However, when we analyze the data sets of all groups in a class, we typically find results with about 3%. This sparks productive discussions on statistics.
      • Treatment of Statistics and Error in Introductory Physics Lab Manuals
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jimmy Gonzalez, John Walkup

      • Type: Contributed
      • Many students experience their first practical application of statistics and error analysis conducting activities in their introductory physics labs. During this time, they learn definitions, concepts, and skills they will use for the rest of their academic and postgraduate career. The presenters will discuss their analysis of the use of statistical methods used in labs by comparing lab manuals aimed at science and engineering students collected from two-year community colleges and four-year universities. Approaches to introducing statistical concepts and procedures are examined for consistency, with particular reference to national and international guidelines such as the NIST and ISO. Their analysis reveals severe inconsistencies in the treatment of statistics and error among the samples. Most notably, wide disparities surfaced in terminology and relationships, along with a dearth of topics that should have warranted a more concerted treatment. Results point to inadequate development of statistical reasoning skills among future scientists and engineers.
      • Student-Centered Approach to Online Radiation Experiments during a Pandemic
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Yugjeet Grewal, John Walkup

      • Type: Contributed
      • First-year students at California State University, Fresno learn to perform scientific research through a Building Opportunities with Networks of Discovery (BOND) course sequence. Students perform their own research as a culminating project. Although COVID-19 eliminated on-campus student involvement, one group of freshmen was undeterred. Spurred by a presentation on the dangers of radium, they decided to complete their research nevertheless. Using a Geiger-Muller tube and sound-capturing software, they measured to reasonable precision the half-layer of steel in absorbing high-energy gamma rays emanating from a Revigator, an early quack medical device. The study describes how they conducted radiation exposure experiments through Zoom, with the instructor acting in the reversed role of “Lab Rat,” and how their procedure can drive similar online radiation experiments without compromising student safety. Finally, it describes how such a project offers lessons in medical history, especially disasters that unfolded when greed and ignorance supplanted science.
      • An Improvement on Pohl’s Pendulum for Nonlinear Dynamics Demonstration
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Zhencheng Huang, xintu cui, han shen, fuli zhao

      • Type: Contributed
      • We made an improvement on the Pohl's pendulum by replacing the symmetrical balance wheel into an oscillating weight, which introduces no-linear torque while swinging. With the coupling of the no-linear torque and resonant vibration driving by a stepping motor, the system is able to produce various mechanic dynamic phenomena, such as bifurcation, double-well potential, chaos and etc. It can be easily observed through the motion of oscillation weight or precisely recorded by the rotation detector. We used it to generate different kinds of periodic or chaotic patterns in phase diagram. The system helps students to establish the non-linear physics concept intuitively.
      • Using 3D Printed Atomic Force Microscope Models to Facilitate Instruction
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Merrell Johnson
      • Type: Contributed
      • Three low cost, raspberry pi controlled atomic force microscope models will be presented. Two of the systems are more compact, which utilize inexpensive servo motors and either laser cut or 3D printed components to build the two dimensional scanners. Thethird larger system uses 3D printed parts, a series of stepper motors and belt drives to create a scalable scanner. A series of investigations that were created as precursors to operating the instruments will be presented. The goal of these experiments is to help students understand concepts pertaining to the resonance of cantilevers and how those ideas are employed in measuring forces. A presentation on how the knowledge relevant to measuring forces with cantilevers and the two dimensional stages are used to map a metallic surface with a magnetic probe. A discussion on how these systems were employed for instruction in the classroom will also be exhibited.
      • Using PHET Simulations to Improve Scientific Abilities in Students
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Rex Taibu, Lloyd Mataka, Shekoyan Vazgen

      • Type: Contributed
      • Science educators usually face a lot of challenges in designing and implementing inquiry-based activities. Common challenges include limited apparatus and time constraints. In this study, students were engaged in scientific inquiry using Physics Education Technology (PHET) simulations via semester-long group projects. The instructor and students used the Scientific Abilities Assessment Rubrics (SAAR) to evaluate project presentations and papers (formative assessment). The overall research project was evaluated using lab assessment scale (pre and post) as well as the post reflection survey. The Science Process Skills Inventory (SPSI) was used to analyze students’ responses to the reflection survey. Quantitative analysis of the lab self-assessment scale showed a larger effect size for both introductory and general physics students. Qualitative analysis of the reflection surveys supported this apparent huge gain in lab skills and revealed students’ experiences of the PHET simulations.
      • Incorporating Python-Based Digital Notebooks into Introductory Physics Labs
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Diego Valente, James Jaconetta, Zac Transport

      • Type: Contributed
      • As part of our large-scale transition to studio-based instruction in our introductory physics courses, we were faced with the challenge of redesigning our lab experiments to significantly shorten lab sessions. To better streamline our lab activities, we have implemented Python-based digital notebooks. In addition to shortening the amount of time students spend writing their reports, these notebooks allow for a flexible implementation of data analysis that can be tuned to the level of the course, while also allowing for the utilization of open-ended questions to assess student understanding and the incorporation of coding in an introductory physics lab setting. This work presents details of our redesign, including our initial steps implementing labs using Jupyter notebooks before we decided on the utilization of the Google Colab cloud-based platform. We discuss advantages and disadvantages of both platforms, as well as measures we have implemented to mitigate plagiarism of work submitted by students.
      • Transformation of introductory mechanics lab at Fort Lewis College
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Alexandra Werth
      • Type: Contributed
      • Laboratory courses offer opportunities for engagement in authentic practices of science; however, there have been recent concerns raised on the effectiveness of labs at reaching this goal. Here, we present on our initial research on transforming an introductory mechanics lab at Fort Lewis College (FLC) in Durango, CO. FLC is one of six designated Native American-serving, non-tribal colleges by the U.S. Department of Education and is one of the most diverse colleges in the nation—FLC has approximately 4,000 undergraduate students, 25% of which are American Indian or Alaska Native identifying. We began our work by actively seeking out input on goals and content for the labs both from students and faculty members. We report on the consensus learning goals determined from faculty interviews, the formation of a Student Advisory Council, the development of the structure and guiding principles of the lab, and our initial research findings.
      • An Instrument to Measure the Little-g in Teaching Labs
      • PAR-G.04
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jingbo Ye
      • Type: Contributed
      • I will present the instrument that I have developed to measure the gravitational acceleration g in teaching labs. This instrument employs two independent methods, one includes the g-ball to obtain time of a free-fall, the other is a simple pendulum, to measure the same physics quantity with precisions within a few percent. This provides students with information to discuss about systematic and random errors in the measurements. I will share the lab manual (pre-lab, discussion questions, a skeleton for lab-report), data acquisition guide (a spreadsheet), and the information about how to DIY this instrument with those who would be interested in trying it in their labs.
  • Introductory Physics for the Life Sciences (IPLS)  

      • Click and Drag Digital Worksheets for Online Biomechanics Activities
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nancy Beverly
      • Type: Poster
      • Click and drag digital worksheets were created on which students can click and drag vectors, lines, text boxes, and symbols to create motion, force, and torque diagrams, as well as analyze graphs for biomechanics scenarios. These were made for use by student groups during an online synchronous introductory physics for life science class, but could be used in a myriad of other ways.
      • Introductory Physics at CU Boulder
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Daniel Bolton
      • Type: Invited
      • How can we achieve our teaching and learning goals in an introductory physics course for non-majors? At CU Boulder we are employing an array of strategies including group work, reformed labs, and two-stage exams. We will also discuss how a department canencourage good teaching by using research-based assessments and teaching circles.
      • A New IPLSCourse: Five Years Later*
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Alice Churukian, Duane Deardorff, Laurie McNeil, Colin Wallace, Daniel Young

      • Type: Invited
      • At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, we completely transformed our two-course sequence of introductory physics for life science majors (IPLS) into the integrated lecture/studio format using biological phenomena to motivate the physics. Across both courses, we have created a suite of 54 active-engagement studios, interactive lectures, and assessment questions, all of which have been developed using the findings and best-practices from PER. This suite includes materials for many topics that are important for life science majors, but not part of the traditional introductory physics curriculum, including non-linear stress/strain, diffusion, chemical energy, and life at low Reynolds numbers. Now five years after the first complete implementation, the two-course sequence is running smoothly. In this talk, I will provide an overview of our journey from germination to realization.
      • Science 100- The Science of Energy
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Donald Franklin
      • Type: Poster
      • Using Energy to Teach Science for all students. This course allows students to learn about the Science of Energy. It contains information on Energy of Biology, Chemistry, Earth & Space, Physics. This gives students a background in all Sciences while in high school. It is designed to help small high schools, and limited expenditures for science courses in high schools.
      • Designing a Reynolds Number Tutorial for an IPLS Course
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jessica Hobbs, Brandon Lunk

      • Type: Poster
      • Many biological processes occur in fluids; therefore, understanding the details of these processes requires an understanding of whether inertial or viscous forces dominate the biological environment. Reynolds number (Re), which is the ratio of these two forces, can help us to identify whether organisms experience viscous flow or turbulent flow when moving through a fluid; this, in turn, gives us physical insight into many biological phenomena. In order to help students with these ideas, we developed an in-class worksheet covering the concepts of viscosity, reciprocal motion, drag (inertial and viscous), and Reynolds number for students in an introductory physics course for life sciences (IPLS). While developing this material, we used faculty surveys, PER faculty test runs, and student-based focused groups for assessing and improving the tutorial. In this presentation, I will showcase the worksheet as well as the design choices involved in its creation.
      • Putting Biology into Biophysics: Adventures in Co-Teaching with Life Scientists
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Kristine Lang
      • Type: Invited
      • The life sciences present a rich trove of physics problems to ponder and solve. However, a challenge I faced in teaching the physics of biological topics is that, as a physicist, I don’t know very much biology. To address this challenge, I developed and co-teach two life-science oriented physics courses in collaboration with biologists. In collaboration with a molecular biologist, I teach a research-based course for first-year students focusing on modalities of microscopy including fluorescence and atomic force microscopy. In collaboration with a human biology and kinesiology professor, I developed and co-teach a 100-level science requirement course focusing on human athletic performance. In this talk I discuss several of the activities and labs developed from these collaborations. I also discuss the rewards and the challenges of teaching with life science colleagues.
      • Physics Learning Goals versus AAPS Survey Results: Life Science Majors
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Mason
      • Type: Poster
      • The Attitudes and Approaches to Problem Solving (AAPS) Survey has been used to analyze students in introductory calculus-based physics, introductory math-based astronomy, upper division/graduate-level physics, as well as Turkish students in high school and introductory university physics. In this study, we consider post-test survey results from pre-IPLS introductory algebra-based physics course sections in 2019 and 2020, which are predominately life science majors. The following variables will be checked for statistical relationship: 1) students’ self-reported learning goals in introductory algebra-based physics courses; 2) students’ choice of major (in particular, life science majors dominate the student population). From prior studies regarding these two variables, it is anticipated that life science majors that express a mastery learning goal (as opposed to a performance learning goal or otherwise) may have more expert-like views than other students; discussion will focus on the accuracy of this statement and potential explanations for results.
      • Three-Dimensional Learning in Introductory Physics for Life Sciences Laboratory Courses
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jason May, Claudia De Grandi, Jordan Gerton, Lauren Barth-Cohen

      • Type: Poster
      • Recent developments in Introductory Physics for Life Sciences (IPLS) laboratory courses have produced fruitful curricular and pedagogical shifts in undergraduate physics education. However, less work has examined to what extent these developments align with a parallel growing interest in three-dimensional learning, which is widely being implemented at the K-12 level through the Next Generation Science Standards. This poster presents a preliminary analysis of a newly reformed IPLS laboratory course at the University of Utah and its extrapolation of three-dimensional learning that involves scientific practices, disciplinary core ideas, and crosscutting concepts. Results suggest IPLS lab curriculum prompts students to engage in complex and dynamic scientific practices and utilize crosscutting concepts when conducting laboratory experiments to meet IPLS-specific course performance expectations. This poster presents course learning outcomes, laboratory experiments, and student artifacts to highlight three-dimensional learning within these IPLS laboratory courses and discusses the potential benefits inherent in developing this new approach.
      • Scaffolding student mechanistic reasoning about static and dynamic liquids
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Dawn Meredith, Jason Jung, Daniel Young, James Vesenka

      • Type: Poster
      • The kinetic theory of gases provides a powerful set of mechanistic resources that allows students to reason productively about pressure in gases. We give evidence students (and experts) are lacking similar resources for reasoning about liquids (especially water in an IPLS course), and provide initial evidence of some possibly productive resources.
      • Student Understandings of Fluid Dynamics
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Dawn Meredith, Jason Jung, James Vesenka, Daniel Young, Rebecca Lindell

      • Type: Poster
      • We report on results from preliminary student interviews and open-ended questions which probe student understanding of the basic fluid dynamics ideas: flow rate, continuity, Bernoulli's equation, and viscosity. These student ideas will help us develop appealing distractors for a conceptual fluids evaluation which is under development.
      • Incorporating Computation into a Physics Course for Life Science Students
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Kirtimaan Mohan, Kathleen Hinko, Vashti Sawtelle

      • Type: Poster
      • Introductory Physics for the Life Sciences (IPLS) courses are gaining momentum in the physics education community, with the creation of multiple curricula for a variety of implementation strategies. At Michigan State University, we have designed an integrated lab-lecture (studio style) introductory physics course that meets the needs of life science students. Our design of this course focuses on incorporating computational simulations that model complex biological phenomenon and complement empirical lab investigations. We will present on updates to a unit on diffusion in which we incorporated a series of computational tasks designed to build up students’ understanding of collisions and random motion. In this presentation we will describe changes that we have made to the unit and how those changes supported student understanding and engagement.
      • Understanding COVID-19 by modeling it
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Peter Nelson
      • Type: Poster
      • Simple epidemiological models are introduced using finite difference methods in Excel. The SIR model explains the initial exponential growth of COVID-19, the effects of social distancing in the US during early April 2020 and successfully predicts the continued spread of the virus during late April and May 2020. The SIR model is the origin of the basic reproduction number R0 and herd immunity. It also predicts what will happen if social distancing is lifted prematurely. A wide range of student research projects are possible for modeling and making predictions based on real data for US states and other countries. See http://circle4.com/biophysics for free sample chapters and videos.
      • Teaching IPLS students to use math in science
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Edward Redish
      • Type: Invited
      • IPLS students and students in algebra-based physics often see math as a as a calculational tool rather than a way of reasoning about the physical world. But, in physics, math-in-science plays a critical role both in our physical ontology ("What is an E-field, really?") and epistemology ("I derived this result from a true equation so it must be true.") as well as for reasoning and organizing our conceptual knowledge. The critical conceptual blending* of physical concepts with mathematical symbology is rarely taught in math and is often taken for granted in physics. I identify a series of tools (epistemic games**) that can help students learn to connect math to the physical world. These tools include readings and activities that can be used throughout a class and that can be downloaded from the Living Physics Portal*** and integrated into existing classes.
      • Modeling the variable moment of inertia of limbs during locomotion.
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Melissa Vigil
      • Type: Poster
      • Analysis of gross motor motion is of particular importance to future physical therapists in our IPLS courses. Using the work of Thollesson & Norberg (J.Exp.Bio, 1991) as a starting point, students use LEGO bricks and Tinker Toys to model the changes in moment of inertia of arms and wings both from the definition of moment of inertia as the sum of mr^2 terms and from the movement of the model as a physical pendulum.
      • A Calculus-based Studio IPLS Course Sequence at UConn
      • PAR-G.05
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Xian Wu
      • Type: Poster
      • At University of Connecticut, we have been designing a studio physics course sequence for life science students. Several non-traditional, bio-relevant physics topics are adapted to meet the needs of the students. In 2020 summer semester, a mock-up studiophysics course is taught to test out the content and the structure of the course. We assess student conceptual learning, problem-solving ability, and attitude toward physics via exams and surveys built locally and the research-based assessments. We will address the limitations of the popular research-based assessments on probing the learning outcomes of the studio physics course for the life sciences.
  • K-12 PER  

      • Studying the long-term effects of learning physics through ISLE
      • PAR-C.05
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Danielle Bugge, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Contributed
      • Today’s high school students need to develop abilities and skills that are applicable across many fields. Recommendations from the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) call for integrating science practices into learning of normative concepts in science classrooms. In my classroom, students learn physics through the Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE) approach. Based on previous studies, we know that ISLE students are capable of developing science-process abilities. However, how do we know if this approach to curriculum design and learning prepares students for success in the workplace? During Fall 2019, I administered a survey to alumni who learned physics through the ISLE approach. In this talk, I report on the findings from this study with regard to what students remember learning, how their mindset changed during their time in the course, and what elements of their experience had an effect on and/or were transferrable to their future courses and careers.
      • What Are Students Learning in AP Physics?
      • PAR-C.05
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Eric Burkholder, Carl Wieman

      • Type: Invited
      • We examined variations in Force and Motion Conceptual Evaluation (FMCE) pre-class scores according to self-reports of students' high school physics courses. Most students in our unusual sample population had taken an AP physics course, allowing us to calculate the correlation between FMCE scores and AP exam scores. We also carried out regression analyses to determine how FMCE scores and course final exam scores depend on taking an AP course and AP exam scores when math SAT score is included as a proxy of students’ general level of college preparation. The results of our analysis suggest that taking AP physics and even scoring well on the AP physics exam may be a rather weak measure of conceptual understanding of physics or the mastery of physics one would expect students to achieve from an introductory university physics course.
      • Using PER to Develop and Adapt PRISMS PLUS
      • PAR-C.05
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lawrence Escalada, Christopher Like, Jeff Morgan, Juliana Huegerich

      • Type: Invited
      • Physics Resources and Instructional Strategies for Motivating Students (PRISMS) is a high school physics curriculum resource that has been used extensively in UNI teacher preparation and professional development. The original PRISMS materials were a collection of 130 high interest activities related to the real-life experiences of high school physics students designed to develop student conceptual understanding and to cultivate student scientific reasoning and problem skills. The enhanced and revised version, called PRISMS PLUS, focuses on complete learning cycles that provide fully integrated experiences that enable students to develop not only their problem solving and inquiry skills but also deep, long-lasting understanding of physics concepts. This presentation will focus on how PER has been used to develop PRISMS PLUS and adapt it to teacher preparation and professional development including alignment with the Next Generation Science Standards.
      • Case Study on the Computational Experiences of High School Physics Students
      • PAR-C.05
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Hamerski, Daryl McPadden, Marcos Caballero, Paul Irving

      • Type: Contributed
      • The recent widespread integration of computation into high school physics classrooms raises questions around how high school students come to use computation for science learning. This presentation examines the experiences and academic identity development of high school students as they take up computational practices in their physics course. Through a multi-level analysis of moment-to-moment classroom discourse, interviews, and broader histories of STEM teaching policy and teacher-driven computational integration, this presentation provides a detailed case study on the computational experiences of students at a racially diverse, suburban American high school.
  • Labs/Apparatus  

      • One aspect of Teaching /Learning in a Virtual Lab
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mikhail Agrest
      • Type: Poster
      • It has been learned over the numerous years of teaching in a real Lab room that Recurrent Study in Labs [1,2] brings flavor and that students love it. It can be easily used in teaching Labs adjusted to a Virtual distant teaching whether the students haveequipment in their hands, or they are observing the lab instructor’s operating it. The author practiced it successfully teaching the cadets of The Citadel for a half of the Spring semester in five labs during COVID-19. The concept of the Recurrent Study is based on studying of the property of the event/system experimentally, then using that learned property predicting results of an event at changed conditions while keeping the property of interest non changeable. The predicted value must be checked by an experiment and the error would affect the grade. The proposed aspect was expanded from Physics to other disciplines like, Chemistry, Biology, Geology.
      • Utilizing Unity as a Classroom Tool for Physics Simulations
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kristopher Andrew, Keith Andrew

      • Type: Poster
      • This work details the advantages and difficulties of using the Unity development environment as a classroom tool for lab activities. The Unity software package is a cross platform highly interactive game development engine available for free by Unity, Inc. Unity gives users the ability to develop 2-d and 3-d interactive environments. We tasked a small Montessori high school classroom with completing the first tutorial on the Unity website, and we found that younger students struggled with the development environment and scripting potential. We found Unity is most useful when students have previous exposure to programming and access to online resources. Online sources provide access to a wide diversity of interesting applications which could gradually introduce students to the development environment.
      • Just a Draft: Improving lab report writing
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mary Brewer Sherer
      • Type: Poster
      • While improving technical writing through lab reports is a goal of most physics programs, many smaller colleges do not have dedicated lab instructors and lab development often falls to the bottom of the list. After several years of discussing (but not implementing) large scale changes in the introductory lab, we decided to focus on one small change that we could easily implement. For the first lab report of the semester, we required a draft report, which we then returned with significant comments before the final report was due. This poster discusses the results both in terms of writing and student attitudes with implementing just this one small change.
      • Designing Writing Intensive Advanced Laboratories in Physics
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sara Callori
      • Type: Poster
      • California State University San Bernardino is currently transitioning from quarters to semesters, starting in Fall 2020, with the Department of Physics transforming its curriculum. One major facet of this redesign is the creation of two writing intensive, advanced laboratory courses. These courses align with program goals and AAPT recommendations for instructional labs, including communicating physics and developing practical skills. By scaffolding assignments and creating opportunities for students to both give and receive meaningful feedback, they will be encouraged to use writing as a tool to bolster their experimental analysis by focusing on demonstrating “how they know what they know”. Peer review and student-designed assessment will also help them think metacognitively about their own writing and the role of writing in the scientific process. Here, I present the course design for the new writing intensive advanced laboratories and reflect on lessons learned and changes made from the previous single-quarter course.
      • Challenges and Successes in Professional Development for Lab TAs
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Danny Doucette, Russell Clark, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Poster
      • At large universities, introductory physics labs are often run by student teaching assistants (TAs). Thus, efforts to reform introductory labs should address the need for effective and relevant TA training. We developed and implemented a research-backed training program that focuses on preparing TAs to support inquiry-based learning, to discuss issues of epistemology, and to establish supportive and equitable learning spaces. Primary impacts of this training were identified using observational and ethnographic protocols, and secondary impacts were assessed through an attitudinal survey of students. We will discuss details of the training program and share results that suggest effective training can positively impact both TA practice and student experiences in the physics lab.
      • Physics Outreach at Fresno State University: A Portable Physics Demonstration Service
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Eric Madrigal, John Walkup, Don Williams

      • Type: Poster
      • The Physics Department at California State University, Fresno has one of the most active physics outreach programs in the country. This program doubles as a service learning course for future teachers, science majors, and anyone interested in teaching. Students enrolled in this program learn many methods of teaching physics, practice their skills in performing demonstrations, and take their lessons directly into public school classrooms of all ages. Unique to this program are travel trailers, funded through a grant by Chevron, full of physics demonstration equipment for delivering physics demonstrations to school children and the overall community throughout California's Central Valley. Previous outreach students who are now teaching can borrow a fully-loaded trailer to use at their own schools, along with videos of demonstrations. An overview of this program will be presented by a pre-service teacher who recently successfully completed the program.
      • Connecting Physics and Engineering through a Modernization of the Advanced Physics Laboratory Curriculum*

      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Muriel Mcclendon, John Peters, Mel Sabella, Austin Harton, Russell Ceballos

      • Type: Poster
      • Connecting topics, experiments and methods in Physics and Engineering through the Modernization of the Advanced Laboratory Curriculum plays a significant role in motivating student interest and addressing needs in the STEM workplace. Current STEM students must be forward-thinking to solve grand challenges and take advantage of diverse opportunities. This project focuses on traditional and modern perspectives to address science and engineering applications. This project will lead to the complete modernization of the advanced laboratory curriculum for physics and engineering students. The project has outcomes that include: 1. Outlining a curriculum plan for the modernization of CSU’s applied physics/engineering laboratory with the inclusion of modern equipment, applications, and new experimental Learning Lab modules. 2. Establishing a student learning community that will inform instructional revisions by incorporating student input through the use of the Learning Assistant Program. 3. Providing outreach opportunities for increasing STEM interest by utilizing the student-developed modules at local high schools.
      • Distance Learning Mechanics Labs Successes and Challenges
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Nichols, Melissa Vigil, Kate Piper, Annie Carani

      • Type: Poster
      • During the shift to distance learning one of the hardest parts of any physics class was how to transition labs into the remote learning environment. For our introductory course this summer, a small kit was sent out to the students containing the bare minimum for students to use as their lab supplies over the course of the mechanics semester. The kit included Lego, Binder clips, string, and a measuring tape. We will present the successes and challenges experienced using these materials to study kinematics, Newton’s Laws, energy, and rotation systems. We will also discuss our goals for future refinements and expansions of this topic list.
      • Using FCI Data to Develop Impactful Class Activites
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Pawl
      • Type: Poster
      • Careful examination of my students’ individual gains on the Force Concept Inventory (FCI) led to the realization that student pretest knowledge on certain key questions appeared to be correlated to enhanced gain during the class. Acting under the hypothesis that addressing those key questions early in the course might result in broader, test-wide gains, I developed two class activities to address one of the key questions. One of the activities is a laboratory experiment and one activity utilizes a PhET simulation. I have tested those activities over the course of four semesters and there is evidence that they significantly increased the class-wide normalized gains on the FCI.
      • Getting the conversation started: Critically thinking about informal programs
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brean Prefontaine, Claire Mullen, Claudia Fracchiolla, Kathleen Hinko, Shane Bergin

      • Type: Poster
      • Are you a director of an informal physics program? Do you want to think critically about how this informal environment is impacting others? Come discuss how structural elements of informal physics programs can positively impact the university students facilitating within your program. In our research, we looked at program facilitator experiences within three different informal physics programs using an operationalized version of the Communities of Practice framework to better understand how these programs support identity development. In this poster, we will do two things: 1) present the findings from our work, including the structural elements of the informal programs that support identity development, and 2) discuss the implications of these findings. We are aiming to start a discussion with practitioners about what practical applications of this research means for informal physics programs - stop by and let’s get this conversation started!
      • How do students develop scientific epistemologies in an ISLE-based course?
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Joshua Rutberg, Sheehan Ahmed, Diane Jammula, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Poster
      • Research[1] shows that in traditional and reformed courses students view physics experiments as confirmatory experiments for theory. They do not recognize the epistemic role of experiments as catalysts for knowledge construction. One approach to learningphysics, the ISLE approach pays specific attention to the role of experiments in the construction of knowledge by the students. In the ISLE approach students encounter experiments as observational, testing and application when they construct, test and apply new ideas in a students-centered inquiry-based environment. Students learn many concepts in the course by starting to analyze experimental data. Will these experiences affect their epistemologies and help them see experiments as the sources of knowledge not only tests? Our poster provides an answer to this question using the instrument developed by Hu and Zwickl. [1] Hu & Zwickl. Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 14, 010121 (2018)
      • Implementation of Design Experiments in Large-Scale Introductory Physics Classes
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alexander Shvonski, Pushpaleela Prabakar, Jacob White, Peter Dourmashkin

      • Type: Poster
      • We describe design-based physics experiments that we developed and implemented in a large-scale, introductory physics course at MIT. The residential course, 8.02 Electricity and Magnetism, has >700 students, with 8 sections total (~90 per section), and is built upon an “active learning” structure, where students interact with each other and online materials during class. We introduced 5 in-class experiments, each having an open-ended, design component, which explored a practical application of electromagnetic concepts. During these experiments, students followed instructions and answered questions on MITx. We also integrated the experiments with pre- and post-experiment assignments to support and reinforce the material covered. We describe how we structured these experiments, how we integrated online components, some considerations with respect to implementation on a large scale, and also report student feedback and E-CLASS results.
      • Validating a Tracker-based Biomechanical Model for Undergraduate Occupational Therapists
      • PS-A.01
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by J. Caleb Speirs, Shannon Keavy

      • Type: Poster
      • Tracker Video Analysis and Modeling Tool has found myriad applications in physics classrooms and labs. A recently designed biomechanics course for future occupational therapists at the University of New England heavily utilizes this tool. In the course, students use Tracker during in-class activities as well as in personal projects to create models and study kinematics and kinesiology. The work presented in this poster describes the creation of a biomechanical model using Tracker and details the process of attempting to validate that model by comparison with data derived from 3D Motion Analysis in the University of New England Motion Analysis Laboratory (MAL).
  • Labs/Apparatus III  

      • How Can You Light The Bulb? - Student Engineered Electrophorus
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bree Barnett Dreyfuss
      • Type: Poster
      • Students are tasked with lighting a small neon bulb with small amounts of electric charge using an electrophorus they built. An electrophorus device is often used to demonstrate electric charging by induction. The basic structure of the device (a handle made of a cup attached to a plate) and the mechanism to charge the electrophorus is demonstrated to the students but the materials of each part are not revealed. Student groups are given four cups and four plates, one each made of aluminum, paper, plastic and styrofoam. Each group tries different combinations of the cup and plate materials until they get the neon bulb to light. The next stage is to try to improve their device and correctly explain how the bulb can be made to light up. Sample student guides, lesson logistics and suggestions for different grade levels will be discussed.
      • How to do an advanced lab course at home, on short notice
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Eric Black
      • Type: Poster
      • The transition to remote learning in March of 2020 came suddenly and with little warning. Fortunately, the closure of campus happened during finals week of Winter Term for those of us on the quarter system, so I had a full week during spring break to develop and deploy a curriculum that our students could do from home during Spring Term. Starting with John Essick’s excellent textbook on LabVIEW and continuing with having hardware drop shipped from National Instruments to the students’ home addresses, we were able to cover quite a bit of material, almost all of the projects worked, and at the end of the term many students commented that they genuinely enjoyed the course.
      • Treatment of Statistics and Error in Introductory Physics Lab Manuals
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jimmy Gonzalez, John Walkup

      • Type: Poster
      • Many students experience their first practical application of statistics and error analysis conducting activities in their introductory physics labs. During this time, they learn definitions, concepts, and skills they will use for the rest of their academic and postgraduate career. The authors will present their analysis of the use of statistical methods used in labs by comparing lab manuals aimed at science and engineering students collected from two-year community colleges and four-year universities. Approaches to introducing statistical concepts and procedures are examined for consistency, with reference to national and international guidelines such as the NIST and ISO. Their analysis reveals severe inconsistencies in the treatment of statistics and error among the samples. Most notably, wide disparities surfaced in terminology and relationships, along with a dearth of topics that should have warranted a more concerted treatment. Results point to potential inadequate development of statistical reasoning skills among future scientists and engineers.
      • Student-Centered Approach to Online Radiation Experiments during a Pandemic
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yugjeet Grewal, Raul Reynoso, Ruben Reyes, Javier Santos, John Walkup

      • Type: Poster
      • First-year students at California State University, Fresno learn to perform scientific research through a Building Opportunities with Networks of Discovery (BOND) course sequence. Students perform their own research as a culminating project. Although COVID-19 eliminated on-campus student involvement, one group of freshmen was undeterred. Spurred by a presentation on the dangers of radium, they decided to complete their research nevertheless. Using a Geiger-Muller tube and sound-capturing software, they measured to reasonable precision the half-layer of steel in absorbing high-energy gamma rays emanating from a Revigator, an early quack medical device. The poster describes how they conducted radiation exposure experiments through Zoom, with the instructor acting in the reversed role of “Lab Rat,” and how their procedure can drive similar online radiation experiments without compromising student safety. Finally, it describes how such a project offers lessons in medical history, especially disasters that unfolded when greed and ignorance supplanted science.
      • Using Spoons as Spherical Mirrors
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by James Hicks
      • Type: Poster
      • An "at-home" version of an introductory physics 2 lab involving spherical mirrors is proposed. In the regular, face-to-face laboratory experiment, students measure the focal length of commerically available spherical mirrors, both concave and convex, using an optical rail. Most students will not have easy access to these types of mirrors at home but a reasonable replacement can be found using the front and back surface of a metal spoon. This provides both a concave mirror and convex mirror with very similar focal lengths. Students were given the task of determing the focal length of the spoon in addition to several general suggestions for measurement techniques. Several of the students’ techniques will be discussed along with their accuracy and possible improvements for implementing this “at-home” lab.
      • The iPad as a virtual oscilloscope for measuring time constants in RC and LR circuits
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Roberto Ramos
      • Type: Poster
      • In a university introductory physics laboratory, the measurement of time constants in RC and LR circuits usually employ a conventional oscilloscope. The standard oscilloscope with its many knobs and switches often intimidate first-time users and can cause anxiety especially among non-physics and non-engineering majors. On the other hand, an iPad has a more familiar, less intimidating and friendlier touch-pad interface. We report our experience in using the iPad as a virtual oscilloscope in an introductory algebra-based physics laboratory course. We used a commercial electronic accessory called Oscium iMSO that turns the iPad into a virtual oscilloscope. Using blind surveys and direct observation, we report student responses to this pedagogical tool.
      • Using an Ordinary Pen as a Lab Tool to Learn Spring Constant
      • PS-B.01b
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Hoang Vo, Nabin Malakar

      • Type: Poster
      • We improvised the learning exercise for energy conservation principle using a simple retractable writing pen to calculate the spring constant of a pen's spring. We used the pen's spring to design and set up an experiment as an undergraduate design project. We took measurements of how high the pen's cap sprung for varying compression length. This allowed us multiple measurements of compression and height. A simple slope-intercept formula was then used to calculate the spring's constant derived from the energy conservation principle. This demonstration serves as an example of how everyday objects could be used to design an experiment, collect data, and analyze the data. We hope that it will be useful for teaching and learning exercise in understanding the basic physics principles.
  • Lecture/Classroom  

      • A New Model for Public Engagement Partnerships With High Schools
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Bennett, Rosemary Wulf, Noah Finkelstein

      • Type: Poster
      • The University of Colorado’s highly successful Partnerships for Informal Science Education in the Community (PISEC) public engagement program has partnered for over 10 years with local Colorado primary schools to implement a collaborative, after-school physics learning program. In recent semesters, PISEC has complemented its work with primary schools by partnering with secondary schools in the front-range area to develop and implement project-based curricula designed to give students opportunities to engage in authentic professional scientific practice, facilitated by CU mentors. These curricula give high schoolers the opportunity to lead projects, design experiments, and present at a conference-like symposium hosted by CU Boulder. We will discuss the genesis of PISEC’s high school efforts and recent outcomes, including first steps toward assessment and research.
      • Taking a Traditional Lecture Online - Lessons Learned
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jacqueline Dunn
      • Type: Poster
      • As campuses were forced to move their classes online in the spring semester of 2020, many different approaches were attempted. Some faculty chose to mimic their traditional lectures exactly, meeting with students synchronously online using various formats, while others chose to move their courses online in an asynchronous format. The approach presented here utilizes a combination of the two. Along with video instructions, video lectures, lecture notes, lecture slides, discussion forums, and online labs moderated by student teaching assistants, two meetings were scheduled with students via a videoconferencing platform. Beyond the technical aspects of moving a traditional lecture from the classroom to an online environment, the analysis presented here will include methods utilized to decrease student stress and frustration with having to adjust to a new learning environment.
      • Class of Particle Physics to Promote the Access of Girls to Scientific Education
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Verania Echaide Navarro, Mario Humberto Ramírez Díaz

      • Type: Poster
      • Nowadays, women and girls continue to be excluded from participating fully in many fields of science at national and international levels, in addition to various issues that make them distance themselves from their scientific curiosity. Physics offers a great opportunity to involve young people in science, therefore, in this article is proposed a master class of particle physics for female high school students in Mexico. The methodology of CERN and the International Group of Scope of Particle Physics (IPPOG) will be used, that way, the students can participate in a real experimental research process.
      • Helping Students Understand Temperature By Using Money
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gerardo Giordano
      • Type: Poster
      • Last year health issues prevented me from presenting on the continued implementation of class activities and discussions that use money to explain temperature as part of a one-semester, introductory, conceptual physics class. The activities and subsequent conversations attempted to explain temperature as a measure of the average translational kinetic energy per particle, its role in heat flow direction, its lack of dependence on the quantity of a substance, how a thermometer measures it, and why it has a lower limit but no upper limit. Using the Thermal Concept Evaluation created by Shelley Yeo and Marjan Zadnik and published in The Physics Teacher (Vol. 39, November 2001), I now present 3 years’ worth of pretest and posttest scores in general and on select temperature related questions. Additionally, results from temperature related questions on the final exam as well as FCI data are included to evaluate the effectiveness of the money related activities.
      • Example written explanations of qualitative reasoning
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Liao
      • Type: Poster
      • Students in AP Physics 1 can sometimes have difficulty developing written explanations of qualitative reasoning, even when they are certain of their final conclusions. This poster can be printed out as a wall reference for teaching students to identify structures of reasoned arguments (using terms from Toulmin's model, McNeill's claim-evidence-reasoning (CER) model, and Frensley's ABCD model and using terms from REASoN: Relationship/rule, Equal/Same/Match, Altered/Different/Mismatch, So what?, Next?) and to provide phrasal templates for some example arguments.
      • Spiral 2.0
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kris Lui
      • Type: Poster
      • Inspired by the idea of a curriculum structured by increasing complexity, I was inspired to re-design a first-year calculus-based mechanics course on this principle. In this design, students encounter four main concepts (kinematics, forces, momentum, andenergy) in a 1D system, then revisit the same ideas multidimensionally, and finally in a rotational framework. In this poster, I will describe the redesigned framework and challenges and benefits of its implementation.
      • Themed Physics for Non-Science College Students
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kris Lui
      • Type: Poster
      • Teaching physics for non-science majors is fraught with challenges. In an effort to engage this group of students, I structured the course around three everyday themes: driving, cooking, and power consumption. Further, quantitative reasoning done throughgraphs, rather than any equations. My poster will describe the structure and curriculum, and include some examples of student work.
      • Making physics problems less google-able
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Morrison
      • Type: Poster
      • In an era when virtually every textbook homework question and test bank problem has been posted online,with solutions, how can instructors create assessments with problems that are not already online? Ideally, intructors would be able to craft assessments that develop critical physics skills without having to completely invent new problems for every type of assessment. Several possible methods of achieving this goal are described.
      • Student perspective about the impacts of feedback
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Carissa Myers, Rachel Henderson, Daryl McPadden, Paul Irving

      • Type: Poster
      • Projects and Practices in Physics (P-Cubed) is a flipped, problem-based learning course for introductory, calculus-based mechanics. P-Cubed was designed using the communities of practice framework, with a principle learning goal to develop scientific practices. To promote students’ development of practices, students spend their in-class time working in groups of 4 to 5 members to solve complex physics problems. Practice development is then facilitated through formative feedback and assessments aligned with growth in practice. Each student receives weekly, individualized feedback from their instructor (either a faculty member, teaching assistant or learning assistant) as a practice-based assessment. The feedback focuses on helping students improve their individual understanding and group collaboration through the development of key group-based practices such as decision making and planning. This presentation reports on a series of semi-structured interviews that were conducted with students at various points in the semester to understand the impact feedback had on them.
      • Anticipatory Teaching Methods and their Usage by Physics/Science Teachers
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Anne Tabor-Morris
      • Type: Poster
      • When looking for good classroom practices, teachers usually consider strategies for teaching individual topics. However, in order to attain mastery, students also can benefit from fitting together topics in the broader landscape of learning. “Anticipatory teaching methods” are explored here, wherein students are alerted regarding upcoming material such that students have a sense of a goal: specifically “historical context”, “vertical learning”, and “quest”. These methods can create a sense of anticipation, but also can encourage students to press forward in their inquiry, potentially increasing student investment. Are teachers already using anticipatory techniques and tools, even occasionally or informally? Reported here is a pilot survey of experienced high school teachers of teaching methods. Data collected indicates a drastic under-usage of anticipatory teaching methods by physics and science teachers compared to other methods, but it is an area of future research whether these methods work and/or are simply overlooked and hence under-utilized.
      • Anticipatory Teaching Technique of “Physics Quest” in the Classroom: Light
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Anne Tabor-Morris
      • Type: Poster
      • The idea of quest as literary device is long established in the humanities community, serving to interest and propel readers. Proposed is a similar teaching technique that can assist in learning physics – specifically here in aiding student development toward understanding light. How so? When quest is used in a myth or novel it carries the reader through the adventures and growth of a character to solve a specific problem. The introduction of a “physics quest” can encourage students not only to re-inspect their own lives to find the hero within advancing toward a difficult goal, but also open the mind to the realization that several steps/topics will be needed to obtain their objective –for example the advance realization of needing to master waves, electricity, and magnetism to get to the result of the ability to fathom the nature of light – with the then added benefit of understanding diffraction and polarization.
      • Engaging Prospective Teachers in Learning about Climate Change via Zoom
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Emily Van Zee, Elizabeth Gire

      • Type: Poster
      • Prospective elementary teachers “met” via Zoom in a physics course during spring term. After exploring light and thermal phenomena, they considered the influence of these phenomena on global climate change. Emphasis was on understanding the greenhouse effect, interpreting evidence for rising sea levels and melting glaciers, and becoming informed about ways that individuals, communities, states, our nation, and international organizations are taking action. Both students and instructor were beginners in using Zoom. On-going revisions occurred in what to attempt with home-made materials, what to include via excerpts from our draft for an open source textbook, and what to abandon. This poster presents some of the students’ written work, their reflections in ungraded surveys about their experiences during this form of remote learning, and excerpts from our open source textbook: Exploring Physical Phenomena: What happens when light from the Sun shines on the Earth?
      • Understanding the student experience with emergency remote teaching
      • PS-A.02
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bethany Wilcox, Michael Vignal

      • Type: Poster
      • In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, colleges and universities transitioned in-person instruction to a new modality we refer to as `emergency remote teaching' (ERT). As many instructors may be facing this same format in future semesters, and in responseto future emergency events, it is important to understand the student experience with ERT in order to inform recommendations and best practices that can be used to improve instruction. In this manuscript, we report on preliminary findings from a survey administered to physics students to gain both qualitative and quantitative feedback on what approaches to ERT are being used as well as which were most effective at supporting student learning. Here, we four initial themes relating to: interactivity and student motivation; lecture format; exam format; and new challenges experienced by students as a result of ERT. These findings have significant implications for instructors with respect to optimizing ERT.
  • Lecture/Classroom II  

      • How can you help lead instructional change? The SEI Handbook
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stephanie Chasteen, Warren Code

      • Type: Poster
      • Departments have power over their own curricula and teaching. Thus, educational change often arises at the departmental level. Faculty, instructors, postdocs, chairs, and others can be effective agents of change, supporting innovations and effective teaching practices. Positive outcomes, however, are not automatic. This poster will share some of the big lessons-learned from the Science Education Initiatives (SEIs) designed by Carl Wieman, in which postdoctoral fellows were embedded directly within disciplinary departments as catalysts of change. Come see our messages for initiative leaders, departmental faculty, and embedded postdocs and instructors, and take a look at a printed copy of our SEI Handbook, free and online at https://pressbooks.bccampus.ca/seihandbook/.
      • We Have Led the Horse to Water - Open Textbooks
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jennifer Kirkey, Jennifer Barker

      • Type: Poster
      • The use of open textbooks in increasing dramatically in first year physics courses. This poster will present the result of scholarly research around student perceptions, the use and impact of open textbooks as well as suggestions for how instructors might change what they do in their classroom around their use of open textbooks. Comparing and contrasting student's attitudes in first year physics, astronomy and biology classes to open textbooks is the theme of this poster. It will also relate attitudes towards open educational resources (OER) to simple demographic information and the overall cost of textbooks to determine whether there are indicators that can be measured a priori to suggest that students in a particular course may be more or less receptive to the incorporation of OER. More than 300 students were surveyed in 10 courses over two years at Douglas College so there is enough data to form interesting correlations.
      • PISEC Intercultural Camps: A Globalized Model For Informal STEM Education
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zach Mbasu, Claudia Fracchiolla, Michael Bennett

      • Type: Poster
      • As society becomes increasingly globalised, educational physics opportunities that promote both global thinking and increased representation are critically needed for the increasing demand in STEM. To meet this need, we propose a global public engagement initiative through a series of short-term, collaborative outreach programs, facilitated simultaneously in Ireland, USA, and Kenya. These programs will take the form of one-week camps designed to expose underrepresented students in their local communities to scientific and intercultural experiences. Therefore, serving as opportunities for students and facilitators to practice scientific skills, broaden scientific horizons, have enriched learning experiences and expand scientific and cultural worldview. We will discuss what the outcomes and challenges faced through the pilot run in Kenya and what are the next steps in the development of the program.
      • Guided Problem Solving: Active Learning while working through Example Problems
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michelle Milne, Samantha Elliot

      • Type: Poster
      • Many physics teachers work through example problems on the board in order to model problem solving while the majority of their students passively watch. However, extensive research shows that students learn more from active learning techniques than theydo from passive ones. How then to convert what is often a passive, but widely-used, technique into an active and engaging one? A low-cost method is presented for working through example problems while actively engaging all students from start to finish and preliminary results on the method’s effectiveness in teaching problem-solving skills are discussed.
      • Guided Inquiry Physics Experiment: Perceptions and Anxiety Level of Grade 8 Students
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Voltaire Mistades, Luzette Oraa

      • Type: Poster
      • A substantial body of research put forward that idea that inquiry-based laboratory is effective in closing the science process skills gap among learners. In the Philippines, however, information regarding the performance of high school learners doing a guided inquiry Physics experiment (GIPE) is limited. Using a mixed-method approach, the study looked into the perceptions and anxiety level of Grade 8 learners while engaged in a guided inquiry Physics experiment. Using an adapted scientific ability rubric to rate the level of laboratory performance of the students, their performance was correlated with their anxiety level, measured using the Physics Laboratory Anxiety Assessment Scale. The over-all anxiety level of the students was rated as intermediate and there is no clear indication that their laboratory performance is correlated with their anxiety level. Data from the students’ reflective journals and interviews were analyzed qualitatively to uncover categories that emerged from the content of the individual reflections. Working as a team, supportive behavior, academic pressure, science process skills, use of language, time constraint, and readiness to high level of inquiry were found relevant to the students’ laboratory performance.
      • Student peer evaluation in collaborative physics classrooms
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Laura Tucker
      • Type: Poster
      • A body of research supports student collaboration to increase learning and build the teamwork skills necessary for almost all careers. Yet concerns about freeloading and other behaviors can negatively affect students' learning experience. We discuss a popular strategy responding to these concerns: student peer evaluations. Peer evaluations are a course assignment in which each student evaluates each of their team members contribution to the team. We discuss the implementation of peer evaluations in large-enrollment courses and research about the relationship between peer evaluation scores and other course outcomes.
      • A Large-Scale Transition to Studio-based Physics in a State University
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Diego Valente, Sarah Trallero, Xian Wu

      • Type: Poster
      • The University of Connecticut is currently undergoing an exciting transformation in the way introductory physics is taught in its large-scale setting. This pedagogical reform spans a total of three introductory sequences encompassing six courses in totaland impacting approximately 2300 students each year. Our underlying goal was to shift away from the traditional framework of segregated lectures and laboratory sessions in favor of a studio-based instructional model blending lectures, problem-solving tutorial sessions and hands-on experimental activities. In this work we discuss details of our newly reformatted program and lessons learned in year one ed in the development stages and year one of its implementation. We also present preliminary data on concept inventory assessments administered in our reformatted courses.
      • Using Bloom’s Taxonomy to Develop New Assessments
      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Waters, Margaret Weck

      • Type: Poster
      • In our algebra-based introductory physics sequence, we have had exams consisting of multiple choice questions and traditional math problems. The multiple choice questions were more conceptual in nature and would come at the beginning of our exams. Then we would have all of the math problems. Unfortunately, a single multiple choice question that potentially covers a number of topics at an arbitrary level of difficulty doesn’t allow an instructor to determine a student’s level of understanding of any single topic. To better assess students’ levels of understanding, we designed sets of questions and problems with increasing difficulty, as defined by Bloom’s Taxonomy. This new way of structuring exams benefited the instructor in documenting levels of student understanding. It also allowed weaker students to show mastery at some level and possibly boost their confidence with the more challenging questions. In general, the students have rated this new assessment positively.
      • Explore the Living Physics Portal: Student-centered curricula for interdisciplinary college physics

      • PS-A.03
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stephanie Williams, Chandra Turpen, Adrian Madsen, Sarah McKagan

      • Type: Poster
      • Come hear about the Living Physics Portal* (www.livingphysicsportal.org), a new online environment, that supports physics faculty in finding, sharing, and adapting open-source curricular materials for interdisciplinary college physics courses. These materials can support faculty in making physics personally meaningful and coherent with students’ other STEM knowledge. The Portal offers low-barrier-to-entry ways to share your own instructional materials and lets you hear about how others are using them. The Portal also supports collaboration and discussion around curricular resources. In addition to introducing the Portal, this poster will summarize: (a) the size of the curricular library, (b) the topics covered by the materials, (c) the size of the Portal community, and (d) aggregate Portal activity statistics. Come by if you want to connect with the Portal community, make a Portal account, or browse what is available through the Portal. *This work is supported by NSF #1624478 and #1624185
  • Lecture/Classroom III  

      • Distance learning with a skills-based physics lab curriculum
      • PS-B.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Emily Allen, Jamie Brandt

      • Type: Poster
      • The evolution and reform of physics education has shifted from traditional, content-driven courses to those that focus on scientific skills. Over the past year we implemented a new curriculum and framework for an upperclassmen, high school level regular physics course that taught students skills to better understand what it means to do science specifically through the lens and practices of a physicist. In this course, we leveraged the elements of the “Nature of Science” (AAAS, 1990) to teach students how to “see physics” in their surroundings rather than in their textbooks. As we made the abrupt transition to distance learning, these skills allowed us to continue hands-on lab activities for students in their own homes using common household items and technology-based tools. We will present the skills, concepts, labs, and tools we used in making this transition as successful and productive for our students as possible.
      • Using Quantum Dots to Teach Introductory QM Concepts and Applications
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jonathan Bennett
      • Type: Poster
      • We purchased CdSe quantum dots (QDs) of different sizes from a science supply company and used a transmission electron microscope (TEM) to image them. Students can easily examine fluorescence spectra and TEM images of these quantum dots and can use the “particle in a box” model to describe the relationship between radius of QD and emission wavelength. Using the widths of emission lines and Heisenberg’s energy-time uncertainty principle, students can estimate the lifetimes of the excited states of the QDs. We will share some of the results obtained by students. Instructors who are interested in using the TEM images and/or fluorescence spectra may get them by contacting the author.
      • Representing Torque with Oriented Parallelograms
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brian Frank
      • Type: Poster
      • In introductory algebra-based physics courses, I have been teaching static equilibrium problems using an oriented area representation of torque. In this poster, I will provide examples that illustrate the approach as applied to a variety of contexts and discuss aspects of classroom implementation.
      • A Motor-Driven Generator with a Gearbox Is Not a Perpetual Motion Machine
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Douglas Goodman, James Wells

      • Type: Poster
      • Perpetual motion machines capture the imagination of many students and instructors. We know that perpetual motion is impossible, nevertheless the explanation for why specific designs fail is not always obvious and is often interesting. One of our students proposed a perpetual motion machine that uses a dc electric motor to drive a dc electric generator through a gearbox. The gearbox rotates the generator multiple times per motor revolution, generating a larger emf across the generator than the motor. We discuss how the energy is partitioned between the motor and the generator as a function of gear ratio, assuming a frictionless gearbox. Alas, our analysis debunks our student’s proposed perpetual motion machine. However, in doing so, we find conditions for two critical gear ratios, one that maximizes the time-averaged generator power output and another that optimizes the time-averaged energy conversion efficiency to 40%.
      • Particle Physics Research within UMD’s FIRE Program
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Muge Karagoz
      • Type: Poster
      • The University of Maryland’s First-Year Innovation & Research Experience (FIRE) is a 3-semester gen-ed program with a first-semester enrollment of more than 600 undergraduates. FIRE provides faculty-mentored research experience and career-readiness with more than 15 diverse research streams available to its students in their second and third semesters. In 2019, I launched a FIRE stream called “Simulating Particle Detection” (SPD), to introduce undergraduate students to the field of experimental high energy particle physics. The research concentrates on computing and data analysis using simulations of novel detectors, specifically, the upgrade calorimeters of the CMS experiment at CERN. While high energy physics experiments are at the forefront of large collaborative research, large-size, university-wide, course-based research experiences are not as common. There are challenges to be addressed to serve about thirty undergraduates every year, such as adaptation of a high-level research topic into a course curriculum, physical and digital research setting logistics, and mentoring of students from different disciplines. I will share my experiences from the first-year running of SPD, highlighting not only research but also pedagogical methods and outcomes concerning the above challenges.
      • Sketch production rules before designing, categorizing, solving, and grading problems
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Liao
      • Type: Poster
      • This poster is a printable guide sheet for using a network representation of production rules when (a) designing problems with intentional amounts of emphasis on different thinking tasks (e.g. focus more on governing relationships or constitutive relationships? focus more on straightforward processing of situations or tricky ontological shifts?), (b) categorizing problems according to types of difficulty, and (c) showing students how to select first principles to solve problems.
      • Working for a Better World: Astronomical Observatories and their People*
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Carmen Pantoja, Mayra Lebrón

      • Type: Poster
      • In this poster we describe the creation and display of a traveling image exhibit about astronomical observatories. The visitors can learn about science at different observatories as they stroll through the electromagnetic spectrum. The exhibit includes: facts about the observatory, an example of the science studied at the observatory, a description of how light is detected, and highlights the people that make the discoveries possible. A special effort has been made by means of concrete materials and demonstrations to promote the active participation of diverse audiences (students, teachers, college professors, general public, amateur astronomers , and the visually impaired). This traveling exhibit allows people from different regions in Puerto Rico to learn about new discoveries, technologies and careers in science.
      • Exploratory Factor Analysis of the QMCA
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Adam Quaal, Gina Passante, Steven Pollock, Homeyra Sadaghiani

      • Type: Poster
      • This investigation is situated within a larger, ongoing project which seeks to understand student thinking in upper-division introductory quantum mechanics courses. We use the Quantum Mechanics Concept Assessment (QMCA) to explore the distinction betweenstudent thinking on multiple-choice questions in position-basis and spin-basis contexts. In this work, we utilize the technique of exploratory factor analysis to group items on the QMCA based on their common variance. In interpreting the resulting factor structure, we focus on the placement of isomorphic questions and the original concept framework of the QMCA. We discuss the implications of our findings to subsequent iterations of the QMCA and the future study of student thinking in these two contexts.
      • Particle Interactions simplified with a Tripreon model for students.
      • PS-B.05
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Peter Riley
      • Type: Poster
      • Whatever other virtues may exist for preon models of elementary particles, there are pedagogical benefits in simplifying vertex interactions for junior HEP students. The Tripreon model is a more intuitive method of tracking Quantum Numbers. A Standard Model example, neutron decay: n0 -> p+ + e- + Ve, which resolves to a quark decay (udd) -> (uud) with the vertices d.W+ -> u and d -> u.W- (uppercase antimatter). How exactly does that happen? Well, we can keep a tally of numerous QNs to ensure all are conserved and verify with past instances. But, what exactly happened? If the QNs are carried by three types of preons (a,b,d) then the d.W+ ->u vertex may be visualised (b.BD).(a.B) -> (a.BD) respectively. Note that the same number of particle types exit the vertex as enter the vertex where b. and .B annihilate. An overview is presented with examples and suggested activities.
  • Mildred Boveda, Arizona State University, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College  

      • Mildred Boveda, Arizona State University, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College
      • PL03
      • Mon 07/20, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Plenary
      • Intersectionality and Transdiciplinarity in Physics Education: Recent studies raise awareness of the nature of diversity and inclusivity concerns and propose best practices for reducing bias for women, LGBTQ+ students, racially/ethnically minoritized students,, and students with disabilities in physics education. While considering individual sociocultural categories (e.g., gender) in isolation has its merit, it is insufficient to adopt a unidimensional approach when attempting to address the disparities in representation and opportunities in physics. Instead, the simultaneous influence of multiple sociocultural identities such as age, gender, citizenship, class, dis/ability, ethnicity, linguistic origin, and sexuality must be considered. Faculty must also examine how interconnected sociocultural identities—their own, those of students, and of other educators—influence curricular decisions and pedagogical practices, as well as power dynamics in the classroom. Scholars in equity-based education communities (e.g. bilingual and special education), ethnic studies, and women, gender, and intersectional studies can inform how physics educators may collaboratively locate and address biases in curriculum and pedagogical practices, including those related to overlapping and interconnected oppressions. Intersectional consciousness will thus be present as a collaborative approach to advancing intersectionality and transdisciplinarity in physics education
  • Museum and Building Lobby Science  

      • Hands on with Quantum Physics
      • STPAR-4
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Boaz Almog
      • Type: Invited
      • Quantum physics is weird and un-intuitive. We usually imagine the classical world around us when think about physics. But in reality it is much more interesting and surprising. I will talk about my personal journey as a physics educator to take modern physics out of the lab and into the public hands. I will show how we can use hands-on demonstrations of superconductor levitation to tell the story of quantum physics. I will argue that this should be our mission as educators.
      • Welcome to Physics: Hallway Outreach Displays at Simon Fraser University
      • STPAR-4
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sarah Johnson
      • Type: Contributed
      • Over the last 10 years the Department of Physics at Simon Fraser University has installed a variety of science outreach displays in the main hallway leading into our building. These include hands-on physics demonstrations of electromagnetism, optics and chaos that people can try themselves. We have also installed monitors showing videos of our activities at TRIUMF and the Trottier Observatory. An additional monitor pays tribute to the generous alumni who have made donations to the department. The walls are painted with images of diagrams and equations from physics lectures, and a schematic of the TRIUMF accelerator. All of this makes for a welcoming entrance to our department that people from all walks of life, from preschool-aged children to seniors, enjoy. We will discuss how various members from the SFU Physics Dept. came together to design and build these displays, and the impact they have had on visitors to our campus.
      • Hands-on Experience in the Lobby of Texas A&M Mitchell Physics
      • STPAR-4
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dawson Nodurft
      • Type: Contributed
      • Each year, hundreds of people from all ages experience hands-on demonstrations in the Texas A&M Mitchell Physics Building lobby. The majority of these demonstrations are on permanent display, so anyone who happens to come to our building has a chance to interact and learn science on the way to a class, meeting, or even if they are just passing through. To encourage participation, we aim for each demo to have a common set of traits. Each demo must be eye-catching; easy to use with little instruction; give an immediate effect from use; and most importantly be fun! We will demonstrate how our exhibits achieve these results.
      • Particle Accelerators and Pool Balls: Integrating Big Science and Small Exhibits
      • STPAR-4
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Rebecca Thompson
      • Type: Invited
      • Education, both formal and informal, is a foundational principle of Fermilab. We have exhibits in both our iconic Wilson Hall and in the Lederman Science Center, but it can be difficult to create small, hands-on exhibits to illustrate the principles behind really big science. Merging the exhibits and site tours can give students a unique understanding of the amazing physics going on at Fermilab.
      • The UNE Squeak
      • STPAR-4
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by James Vesenka, Benjamin Wheeler

      • Type: Contributed
      • The "UNE Squeak" is a classic example of "repetition pitch", a phenomenon attributed to Huygens relating to a reinforced echo generated by a white noise source off a a long stone staircase. This is a first day, second semester, introduction to class, that embodies many features of our second semester curriculum. It is an interesting topic for students to start our second semester. Students are asked to go to one of three concentric brick rings before the first class and generate the squeak and puzzle over the physics behind the phenomena. We explore the answer over the semester as we slowly cover the physics behind the phenomena.
  • Neutrino Physics in the Classroom  

      • Neutrino Experiments Inspire Students
      • PAR-D.04C
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Marla Glover
      • Type: Invited
      • Many students in high schools have misconceptions about frontier science experiments. They may think that there is nothing new for them to discover or that they do not have the background necessary to understand what is happening in these experiments. Yet students can use classical physics to analyze neutrino experimental data and draw conclusions. This talk will describe my students' analysis of neutrino data through conservation of momentum. The audience can participate as students for a very brief time to get the feel of being the investigator. I will also share the reaction of my students to using this activity.
      • How To See Neutrinos
      • PAR-D.04C
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nathaniel Tagg
      • Type: Invited
      • Neutrino experiments are impressive: they are huge, they require measure nearly-undetectable particles, and recently have been capturing high-resolution "pictures" of neutrino-matter. We will show some tools for displaying this physics to high-school audiences (as well as professional physicists) and describe some of the challenges in translating real, raw data into understandable ideas.
  • New Curriculum by K-12 Outreach Programs  

      • Nuclear Science for Everyone
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zachary Constan
      • Type: Contributed
      • The National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory and Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics conduct a host of different outreach programs. Camps offer the experience of being a nuclear scientist to students of (nearly) any age and science teachers. Lessons and games connect nuclear science with current astrophysics topics. Tours offer a close-up view of research in action, while talks are available to groups that can’t travel. Museum exhibits make the research truly hands-on, while dance introduces nuclear concepts in a novel fashion for a brand new audience. There truly is something for everyone. Discover the FREE resources available to students & teachers, kids & adults anywhere in the world!
      • BYU/UVU-GAL: A focused Outreach Activity for Young Women
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dallin Durfee
      • Type: Contributed
      • Since 2013 I have run a multiple-day, focused summer outreach program. The goal of the program is to dispel biases and show junior high and high school aged girls that they have the ability and opportunity to become scientists. The event is designed to give approximately 16 young women an intense, multi-day experience. The small size of the group and the length of the activity allows them to understand and perform in-depth activities. Insights I have gained about successfully running this type of activity will be discussed.
      • Physics content and practices across the landscape of informal physics
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dena Izadi, Julia Willison, Kathleen Hinko

      • Type: Invited
      • There are multiple ways for K-12 students to learn about physics and communicate science. One example is informal physics programs, which provide significant science resources in their communities. These programs house unique collections of physics artifacts and experiences for K-12 and are facilitated by educators who are experts at motivating interest and involvement in students. As part of our nationwide effort to develop a systemic understanding of the landscape of informal physics, we have developed a framework to investigate how these programs are structured and facilitated. Our study is focused on a number of important aspects, including the curriculum used by practitioners, how informal physics programs are facilitated, how they are socially constructed, how they attract their audience, and what type of assessment they use to evaluate their own effectiveness. In addition, we will share our experiences combining physics for K-12 students with other disciplines, including art, in program curricula.
      • Sharing to Learn: Undergraduate Experience in Little Shop of Physics
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Heather Michalak
      • Type: Invited
      • Throughout the Little Shop of Physics’ (LSOP’s) 29 years, we’ve shared informal, hands-on science education with over 600,000 K-12 students. This success has been — and continues to be — possible thanks to over 4,000 undergraduate volunteers and interns.All the interactive experiments we take to schools across the country are built and maintained by undergraduates at Colorado State University. These same undergraduates have primary responsibility for interacting with K-12 students during LSOP school visits. Our volunteers and interns come from all majors and backgrounds; this diversity benefits the volunteer and intern cohort, the LSOP, and the K-12 students we work with. In turn, during their time at LSOP, volunteers and interns learn marketable skills, acquire conceptual physics understanding, and belong to an inclusive campus community. Undergraduate involvement is at the heart of LSOP’s ongoing cogency; it keeps the program harmonized to current needs of K-12 students.
      • PiA - Physics in Advent, A Hands-on Physics Advent Calendar
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Arnulf Quadt
      • Type: Invited
      • "PiA - Physic in Advent" https://www.physics-in-advent.org is an Advent calendar of a special kind: a physics Advent calendar. From 1st to 24th December, small physics experiments using household material are presented every day as youtube videos by Mr.Santa or Ms. Santa. Participants do the experiments and answer a question on the PiA website. On the following day, there will be a solution video and possibly a point. After 24th December, all participants receive individual certificates. Among the best participants, prizes will be raffled off in the categories individual, school class or school. „PiA - Physik im Advent" is aimed at children and pupils aged between 11 and 18 years. It is intended to awaken the joy of experimenting and offer education, entertainment, and fun at the same time. In 2019, a new record was set with 43,500 registered participants, 49% of whom were girls, and 1.7 million visitors overall.
      • A Free Renewable Energy-based Physics Camp for Diverse Middle School Girls
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Roberto Ramos
      • Type: Contributed
      • A safe, nurturing learning environment, hands-on collaborative learning, interaction with women model scientists, laboratory and industrial plant tours, engagement using novel experiences, and an atmosphere of positive reinforcement were key interventions implemented in a physics camp designed to enhance the physics learning of and disciplinary appreciation by middle school girls. The Physics Wonder Girls Program provided a free, renewable energy physics-based summer camp to two cohorts of middle school girls from the Philadelphia area. Coming from diverse communities, the girls took a crash course on circuits using solar cell kits, and built and raced solar cars and boats. They compared the efficiencies of silicon cells vs. organic solar cells, built solar cells based on dyes from raspberry and blackberry fruit, and used a thermal imager to audit heat leaks. They met women physicists and engineers, toured a local food plant and presented demonstrations to a community of friends and teachers.
      • Creating Explanatory and Predictive Models of Magnetism in the Middle-Grades
      • PAR-B.03
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Tamara Young, Lauren Barth-Cohen, Sarah Braden, Sara Gailey

      • Type: Contributed
      • There is a growing interest in the scientific practice of Developing and Using Models as it is included in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS, 2013). However, often the focus has been on models that capture how a given phenomenon looks, rather than models for explaining and predicting how scientific phenomena work. We developed a curriculum focused on supporting students in creating mechanistic (or explanatory) models of magnetism that can be used to make predictions. In this curriculum, students: explore an anchoring phenomenon, create models, investigate additional magnetic properties while collecting data, revise their models, and finally, through consensus building activities, create a consensus model that they present to the class. We have found that this process allows students to create models of magnetism that are both explanatory and predictive. We will present this curriculum and show examples of student work to help participants use this in their own classrooms.
  • PER Curriculum and Instruction III  

      • Characterizing Active Learning Environments in Physics Using COPUS
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kelley Commeford, Eric Brewe, Adrienne Traxler

      • Type: Contributed
      • Active learning has been shown to be more effective than passive lecture methods, but more work must be done to understand what mechanisms lead to effective active learning environments. The first step in understanding the mechanisms of active learning pedagogies is to establish a vocabulary with which to characterize them. One such method we have used is the Classroom Observation Protocol for Undergraduate STEM (COPUS), which codes student and instructor activities in two minute intervals. These profiles give us a picture of what kinds of activities are occurring in the classroom with the implementation of a given pedagogy. We have gathered COPUS profiles for six active learning pedagogies in physics. We discuss the individual characteristics for each pedagogy and present results from latent profile analyses.
      • Harnessing Active Learning in Educational Videos
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gregory Kestin, Kelly Miller

      • Type: Contributed
      • The recent global move to online instruction has increased the importance of videos in education. At the same time, active learning has become increasingly accepted as an improvement over passive instruction. How can we transfer the advantages of active learning to instruction via video? We found that physics videos are most effective when they are designed both to actively engage students and manage their cognitive load. Notably, it is the combination that matters; videos that either solely promote active learning or solely manage cognitive load provide no advantage to learning outcomes.
      • Daily Bell Ringers: Short activities impacting science identity, pedagogical knowledge, and students’ science attitudes

      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Steven Maier
      • Type: Contributed
      • Can regular, short, beginning of class activities (ie “Bell Ringers”) favorably impact students’ science identity, pedagogical knowledge, and attitudes toward science? These types of activities are supposed to engage learners at the very start of the class, getting them on task and settled from the hallway. As this is an instructional strategy common in K-12 learning environments, their effectiveness and utility among pre-service teachers merits investigation. Firstly, treating pre-service teachers more as adult learners, these activities could be “make and take” mini lessons for teacher candidates to collect for use in their own classrooms. Secondly, though seemingly unrelated at first, the “lessons” to be learned in these activities could further build upon or augment course curriculum in subtle yet measurable ways. In this talk, I will briefly explore how these types of activities could serve other roles while presenting initial findings investigating their effectiveness.
      • Temporal Patterns of Students Using Online STEM Skills Practice Assignments
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Megan Nieberding, Andrew Heckler

      • Type: Contributed
      • “Essential Skills” is an online skills practice application assigned weekly to students to improve their fluency in the basic STEM skills necessary for solving more complex physics problems. We have investigated the temporal patterns of over 1500 algebraand calculus physics students practicing multiple topics, several times each, throughout the semester. We report an observed increase in student accuracy and a decrease in response time per question for the vast majority of the topics. We will characterize the progression of student response times and accuracies as they revisit the topics though out the semester, including observations of patterns relating the accuracy and time evolution data to student grades in the course. Additionally, we will comment on the comparisons between the two groups of students (algebra vs calculus physics students) in terms of their accuracies and response time throughout the practice.
      • The impact of IPLS in a senior biology capstone course
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jack Rubien, Sara Hiebert Burch, Catherine Crouch, Benjamin Geller

      • Type: Contributed
      • In this second of two paired talks exploring the longitudinal outcomes of Introductory Physics for Life Science (IPLS) on student learning, we examine whether differences in student work on a diffusion task given in the senior biology capstone course canbe correlated with prior enrollment in IPLS, and how those differences reflect competencies developed in the IPLS curriculum. More specifically, we assess whether IPLS students are more likely to reason quantitatively about diffusive phenomena and to successfully coordinate between multiple representations of diffusive processes. We also use survey data to describe the attitudes toward physics of IPLS and non-IPLS students in the senior capstone, and position these findings within the broader context of our longitudinal study of the impact of IPLS on student work in later biology and chemistry environments.
      • Does IPLS help students apply physics to biology?
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Maya Tipton, Benjamin Geller, Catherine Crouch

      • Type: Contributed
      • Although we have found that students in our Introductory Physics for Life Science (IPLS) course describe physics as more relevant to their primary interests than do their counterparts in a traditional introductory physics environment, we do not yet know whether IPLS courses better prepare life science students to use physical reasoning in contexts that extend beyond those explicitly encountered in IPLS. To answer this question of whether IPLS better prepared our students for future learning, we designed and administered a task related to fluid dynamics at the conclusion of both traditional and IPLS introductory physics courses. We describe the construction of the task and the ways in which IPLS students approached the task differently than did students in the traditional course. We interpret the results in light of the goal of the IPLS course, supporting transfer within the preparation for future learning paradigm around which our course is designed.
      • Distance Learning Comparative Study
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kenneth Walsh
      • Type: Contributed
      • The rapid increase in distance learning presents a unique opportunity to incorporate PER-based curriculum in a new classroom environment. It also presents a chance to carve out a new education sub-discipline in physics. At Oregon State University we havebuilt an entirely online Introductory Physics curriculum that leverages many of the lessons learned in PER. Students engage in Peer Instruction and collaborative learning through our innovative Virtual Classroom. The structure, content, and practices in the Ecampus environment mirror the reformed on campus curriculum as much as possible. This has enabled what we believe is the best apples-to-apples comparative study within the physics community to date. I'll report on the preliminary findings of this study, including shedding light on the value of real-time engagement in online classes.
      • Understanding the student experience with emergency remote teaching
      • PAR-F.05
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bethany Wilcox, Michael Vignal

      • Type: Contributed
      • In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, colleges and universities transitioned in-person instruction to a new modality we refer to as `emergency remote teaching' (ERT). As many instructors may be facing this same format in future semesters, and in responseto future emergency events, it is important to understand the student experience with ERT in order to inform recommendations and best practices that can be used to improve instruction. In this manuscript, we report on preliminary findings from a survey administered to physics students to gain both qualitative and quantitative feedback on what approaches to ERT are being used as well as which were most effective at supporting student learning. Here, we four initial themes relating to: interactivity and student motivation; lecture format; exam format; and new challenges experienced by students as a result of ERT. These findings have significant implications for instructors with respect to optimizing ERT.
  • PER Using Institutional Data Sources and Big Data Research Methods  

      • “Big Data” Analysis of Postsecondary Student Engagement and Performance: Insights and Perils

      • PAR-G.07
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jacquelyn Chini, Adan Vela, Shahab Boumi

      • Type: Invited
      • Institutions record multi-faceted data about student identity, engagement and performance, from family income and zip code to “check-ins” at the campus gym to course enrollment and performance. This data could help us identify systemic barriers to students’ engagement and degree completion and describe the enrollment strategies of successful students. However, because the data is often de-identified, it does not tell the complete story of a student’s journey through their degree program. In this talk, I will describe the questions and methods our team has explored, as well as the challenges that have arisen in interpreting the data and results.
      • What do Grades Tell Us About Students, Instructors, and Programs?
      • PAR-G.07
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Heckler
      • Type: Invited
      • Course grades are concrete outcomes with real-world consequences for students. To what extent do grades, as they are currently awarded, achieve our instructional and programmatic goals and reflect our values? Higher Educational Institutions are sitting on vast amounts of data that can help us to gain more insight into these questions and perhaps lead us to more desired outcomes. I will discuss three data analytics projects we conducted—based on data from over 5 years and 20,000 students-- to provide examples. First, to set context, we characterize grade outcomes in introductory physics courses, including ACT scores, age, and several demographic groupings. Next we examine the effects of individual instructors on student grades in their own courses, and the grades of their students in follow-on courses. Finally, we examine grade components and find moderate demographic differences between various components, suggesting that various grade components and grade-weighting may benefit from reconsideration.
      • Extending Machine Learning to Predict Unbalanced Physics Course Outcomes
      • PAR-G.07
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jie Yang, Seth DeVore

      • Type: Invited
      • Machine learning algorithms represent an exciting new class of quantitative methods to understand physics classes and students. Recent work has applied these algorithms to classify students as those likely to receive an A or B or students were likely to receive an C. D, F in a physics class. The metrics used become unreliable when the outcome variable is substantially unbalanced. This talk further explores the classification and extends those methods to predicting whether a student will receive a D or F. This study also investigated the previous finding that demographic variables such as gender, underrepresented minority status, and first-generation status had low variable importance for predicting class outcomes; down sampling revealed that this result was not due to the underrepresentation of these students in the class studied.
  • PER: Assessment, Grading and Feedback II  

      • Report and Rerun: Closing the Loops in Education
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Mohamed Abdelhafez, David Pritchard

      • Type: Contributed
      • We’re developing a web-based utility to give instructors next morning formative reports on last night’s assignments, including the time and difficulty on questions and videos/readings to guide today’s instruction. Together with additional metadata, thisinformation can guide revising the course for rerunning next year. Data are presented using color codes for quickly assessing how well students are doing on individual resources and on the entire assignment. This quickly identifies resources to eliminate or move elsewhere. We use “edx2bigquery” to convert edX log data into Google BigQuery which generates the dynamic reports. It also provides an easy way of adding static metadata via a popup in a modified version of open edX or directly into the resource database. These uses illustrate the desirability of “closing the loop” in education, a powerful way to improve instruction and content. The audience can suggest what information they desire - or to mohamedr@mit.edu
      • Evaluating Gender Fairness in the FCI via the LASSO Platform
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by John Buncher, Drew Aubrey

      • Type: Contributed
      • Recently, there has been a lot of interest in assessing the gender bias in a number of widely-used conceptual surveys. One recent study by Traxler et al. found several items on the FCI to be biased towards male students. In this work, we examine if thesame items are problematic when administered in an online format across different institutions (via the LASSO platform). Using Classical Test Theory (CTT) and Item Response Theory (IRT), we find that most FCI items are substantially unfair to women, supporting the findings of Traxler et al. Additionally, items that had the most bias towards men are consistent with those Traxler et al. suggested removing to reduce the overall gender bias in the FCI.
      • Studying distractors with ReMNIRT: Reduced Multidimensional Normalized Item Response Theory

      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Byron Drury, Yunfei Ma, John Stewart, Mohamed Abdelhafez, Dave Pritchard

      • Type: Contributed
      • Distractors (i.e. incorrect responses) on research-designed multiple choice instruments are often designed to reflect specific prevalent belief structures among students. Traditional Item Response Theory (IRT) models only consider the correctness of students’ responses, not the specific incorrect responses given, and therefore cannot reveal the specific misconceptions held by a population of students. We introduce a new model, ReMNIRT, which extends upon prior work in polytomous IRT by introducing a weight matrix which concisely quantifies what each possible response tells us about the latent skills of students. We apply this model to a data set of pre- and post-instruction administrations of the Force Concept Inventory (FCI) to approximately 17500 students at seven undergraduate institutions. The insight that this analysis gives on the specific ways in which students misunderstand mechanics will help instructors to use the FCI and other research-designed assessments more effectively as formative assessments to inform their teaching.
      • Gauging student attendance and participation: Generic clickers versus TopHat
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Adebanjo Oriade
      • Type: Contributed
      • In my practice I have found TopHat [1] a much better tool (than generic clickers) for gauging student attendance and participation. I have used clickers for over six semesters, and TopHat I have used this spring 2020 semester. In this light, the observations I share might be premature, time will tell. TopHat seems better, for reasons like having a wider spectrum of question types, and having an easy to use facility for students to review the questions later. Engagement is vital for active learning since we want students motivated, and we want to have measures of progress towards the learning goals of the course [2]. Our score for attendance was binary while that of participation was measured on a skewed ternary scale. Zoom chat transcripts and Google document chats were also used as gauges. I look forward to learning from you how you gauge engagement and learning in your learning spaces.
      • Modeling Students as Thermodynamic Systems using the Canonical Ensemble
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Trevor Smith, Nasrine Bendjilali

      • Type: Contributed
      • We have previously established a ranking of incorrect responses to FMCE questions using Item Response Theory. In Bock’s Nominal Response Model (NRM), each student has an associated latent trait (i.e., understanding of mechanics), and each response is represented by two parameters. One of the parameters is reported as showing the strength of correlation between that response choice and the latent trait. Bock does not interpret the meanings of these parameters; however, the mathematical form of the NRM is identical to the probability of a system being in a discrete degenerate energy state in the canonical ensemble. Through analogy we may interpret the latent trait as relating to the system temperature, and explain why one parameter (“energy”) is related to the latent trait but the other parameter (“degeneracy”) is not. We may also gain additional information by extending this analogy to consider macroscopic quantities such as average energy and entropy.
      • Optimizing Machine Learning to Identify At-Risk Physics Students
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by John Stewart
      • Type: Contributed
      • Recently, machine learning algorithms, primarily random forests, have been used to identify students at risk of failing introductory physics. While these algorithms produced excellent accuracy when identifying students who would receive an “A” or “B” in a physics class, the performance was much worse when identifying students who would receive a “D” or “F”. This work investigates multiple pathways to optimize the algorithms to improve performance including using alternate algorithms such as support vector machines, optimization algorithms such as gradient boosting and regularization, and ensemble algorithms which allow multiple different algorithms to vote on the results. This work seeks to identify the limit of accurate prediction with only institutional variables.
      • More representative and less biased methods for interpreting student outcome data
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ben Van Dusen, Jayson Nissen

      • Type: Contributed
      • We address two major issues in the methods PER has historically used to interpret student outcomes on research based assessments (e.g., the FCI). First, PER has historically used normalized learning gain (g) as a normalizing factor to interpret student outcome scores. This is problematic because g has no statistical basis and is biased in favor of high pre-score groups. Second, instructors have been comparing their student outcomes to those in the published literature. This is problematic because the published literature overrepresents outcomes from courses in highly-selective institutions. In this talk we will offer two alternative methods for interpreting student outcomes based on our analysis of a large-scale dataset with representation across the spectrum of institution types. Specifically, we recommend interpreting student outcomes using either a scatter-plot of a large-scale course pretest and posttest scores or an effect size measure (e.g., Cohen’s d of Hedges g).
      • Evaluating impact of GTA training in a mixed-reality classroom simulator
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Tong Wan, Constance Doty, Ashley Geraets, Erin Saitta, Jacquelyn Chini

      • Type: Contributed
      • In this study, we evaluate the impact of rehearsing teaching skills in a classroom simulator on GTAs’ instructional practices in combined tutorial and laboratory sections of an algebra-based introductory physics sequence over three semesters. GTAs participated in different numbers of simulator rehearsal sessions across the three semesters: no simulator training, one session, and four sessions. We conducted 109 classroom observations for 23 GTAs, using a modified version of Laboratory Observation Protocol for Undergraduate STEM (LOPUS). To classify and characterize GTAs’ instructional practices, we conducted a hierarchical cluster analysis and found three instructional styles: “the group-work facilitators”, “the whole-class facilitators”, and “the waiters.” These instructional styles vary in multiple GTA codes, including amount of wait time and posing questions in small groups and whole class. We discuss the characteristics of the instructional styles and distributions of GTAs’ use of the styles in each semester.
      • Assessing Mathematical Reasoning: The Physics Inventory of Quantitative Reasoning
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Suzanne White Brahmia, Alexis Olsho, Andrew Boudreaux, Trevor Smith

      • Type: Contributed
      • Mathematical reasoning flexibility across physics contexts is a desirable learning outcome of introductory physics, where the “math world” and “physical world” meet. Physics Quantitative Literacy (PQL) is a set of interconnected skills and habits of mindthat support quantitative reasoning about the physical world. We present the Physics Inventory of Quantitative Literacy (PIQL), which is a validated instrument that assesses students’ proportional reasoning, co-variational reasoning, and reasoning with signed quantities as they are used in physics. Unlike concept inventories, which assess conceptual mastery of specific physics ideas, the PIQL is a reasoning inventory that can provide snapshots of student ideas that are continuously developing. We are exploring analysis methods of student responses on the PIQL that will allow for assessment of hierarchical reasoning patterns, and thereby potentially map the emergence of mathematical reasoning flexibility throughout the introductory sequence, and beyond. (NSF DUE-1832836, DUE-1832880, and DUE-1833050)
      • Applying Machine Learning to Automatically Assess Middle-School Students’ Argumentation
      • PAR-E.04
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Xiaoming Zhai, Kevin Haudek, Chris Wilson, Tina Cheuk, Jonathan Osborne

      • Type: Contributed
      • Recent science education reform calls for argumentation as one of the central practices in science classrooms. However, evaluating student argumentation proficiency is challenging. Based on an existing learning progression of argumentation and grade-appropriate objectives, we developed a measure for middle-school students in three contexts (e.g. kinetic theory of gases) of 19 constructed response items. Experts coded responses from 932 middle-school students for components of argumentation and used these coded responses to train machine learning algorithms for each item. The algorithms were validated using a cross-validation approach. We found that the machine-human agreements are robust, with a mean Cohen’s kappa=0.75, SD=0.08. We further applied a many-facet Rasch analysis and found the item difficulty in this measure is well aligned with the established learning progression. The algorithms developed in this study can be used in classrooms to automatically evaluate students’ argumentation proficiency.
  • PER: Curriculum and Instruction  

      • Examining Student Design Tasks in Research-based Activities
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Amin Bayat Barooni, Joshua Von Korff, Brian Thoms, Zeynep Topdemir, Jacquelyn Chini

      • Type: Contributed
      • One goal of physics activities may be to develop student skills in designing experiments. Understanding the use of student design tasks can help instructors who want to use research-based approaches to create new activities. In this research, we analyzedstudent design actions in 66 research-based activities from 11 different curricula to determine the frequency of various design tasks that students were asked to perform. Our definitions of student design tasks were: 1) describing an experimental procedure invented by the student, 2) improving a previous experiment, 3) making a hypothesis, 4) choosing questions to investigate, and 5) designing, stating, inventing, or improving a mathematical or quantitative procedure.
      • A First-Year Research Experience for Physics Majors
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jonathan Bougie
      • Type: Contributed
      • Faculty in the Loyola University Chicago (LUC) Physics Department initiated the “Freshman Project” in 1996. This project has continued each year until today, becoming a separate one-credit course that is a graduation requirement for majors in the department. Students, generally in their first year in the major, work in small groups with a faculty mentor, carrying out a semester-long investigation designed to model many aspects of the research experience. Students propose an investigation, design and carry out an experiment, conduct theoretical analysis, and present their results at a department symposium. I will discuss the important role this program has played in the growth and development of the Physics Department at LUC, as well as the benefits of engaging students in this activity early in their undergraduate careers.
      • An Online Physics Course to Empower the Adoption of Open Education Resources
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zhongzhou Chen, Geoffrey Garrido, Matthew Guthrie, Zachary Felker, Tom Zhang

      • Type: Contributed
      • Our group has created open source online learning modules covering around 95% of common topics in a college level calculus-based mechanics course. These learning modules are hosted on an open-source platform, Obojobo, which can be deployed on a cloud server and integrated with any learning management system supporting LTI standards. The motivation to create this new set of open education resources (OER) is threefold: 1. They blend instruction, practice and assessment together in a mastery-based modular design to improve student learning; 2. The modular design provides higher flexibility and better organizational structure to facilitate, adopt, and reuse OER; 3. Our group is developing methods to analyze student learning data that enable the modules to be continuously improved based on data analysis. In the future, these modules could hopefully replace lectures and textbooks to promote the adoption of active learning practices in the classroom.
      • Can Extra Credit Effectively Reduce Cramming Behavior for Online Homework?
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zachary Felker, Matthew Guthrie, Zhongzhou Chen

      • Type: Contributed
      • It is common among many college students to wait until the last minute to complete homework assignments, which leads to insufficient time for study. Can assigning extra credit for early completion of homework assignments alter students’ behavior? We study students’ work habits when completing mastery-based online learning modules for homework by analyzing clickstream data collected from the online learning platform over multiple semesters. In some semesters, students may earn extra credit by completing some of the assigned modules well before the due date in the form of “treasure trove” quizzes. These quizzes receive overwhelmingly positive feedback from students. We examine in what ways the "treasure troves" change student behavior by clustering learning events into sessions using a machine learning algorithm. We examine how duration, number, or event density of clusters differs when “treasure troves” are introduced. We also study their impact on exam scores.
      • Direct observation of student behavior in online learning modules
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Matthew Guthrie, Zachary Felker, Tom Zhang, Zhongzhou Chen

      • Type: Contributed
      • Interpretation of student behavior in online learning platforms based on clickstream data is complicated by not being able to directly observe the learner. This leads to difficulties in understanding inherently unobservable effects on the students’ clickstream data. For example, we try to calculate the amount of time that each student spent studying the instructional material in each module, which requires estimating certain properties of the resulting data. Consequently, the major issue we address in this work is the difficulty of making reasonable cutoffs for abnormally short and abnormally long events. Students enrolled in introductory mechanics courses participated in a study where they completed online homework modules in a controlled, observed environment. In this talk, we will present comparisons between students’ clickstream data for those who were observed and those who were not observed, and for the same student in proctored and non-proctored sessions on different modules.
      • Guiding Student Learning with Data
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sujata Krishna, Asa Levi, Jason Lokkesmore

      • Type: Contributed
      • We report on the use of data in guiding student’s self-assessment of mastery of the learning objectives. Online homework and assessment are commonly used in introductory physics courses. In a gradebook with multiple assignments it can be difficult for a student to realize where they stand with respect to specific learning objectives. We developed individual student-dashboards for the online and face-to-face physics students with a view to revealing the particular concepts they are yet to master and where the payoff from increased effort is maximized. Pearson and UF partnered over the last 6 months to enable students to view their performance relative to the class average at the learning objective level. We also implemented similar dashboards for groups in the group problem solving sessions with Learning Assistants. We report on how the Learning Assistants used the analytics to structure their study sessions.
      • Using Interactive Online Modules to Improve Student Outcomes
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jeremy Munsell, N. Sanjay Rebello

      • Type: Contributed
      • The expertise reversal effect (ERE) is concerned with the relative effectiveness of different presentations of instructional materials for learner’s with differing levels of domain knowledge. In this work we present the results of a pilot study meant to develop online instructional modules (OIM) that were made adaptive according to the ERE. N = 185 students enrolled in a first year algebra based physics course were provided instruction by way of an OIM covering the concept of energy. Students were randomly shown a module offering a high level guidance or a low level guidance. Student’s were designated as either being high prior knowledge or low prior knowledge post-hoc based on their score on a mid-term exam. Consistent with the ERE, we found that high knowledge students did significantly better when presented with instructional materials using a low level of guidance. This effect was absent for students with low levels of domain knowledge.
      • Exploring the Durability of Student Attitudes Toward Interdisciplinarity
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gwendolyn Rak, Benjamin Geller, Catherine Crouch

      • Type: Contributed
      • Building on prior analyses of how introductory physics experiences affect student attitudes, preliminary evidence suggests that IPLS students, more so than their counterparts in traditional introductory physics courses, express the attitude that physics is relevant to their primary biological interests. We report on the durability of these attitudes. We present results from interdisciplinary attitude surveys given to students a year (or more) after their initial experience in IPLS, as well as immediately after that experience. By tracking the evolution of student attitudes over time, we assess whether attitude improvements due to IPLS are in fact stable and long-lasting. We also explore how students’ subsequent coursework in biology or other disciplines may influence these attitudes.
      • Examining the Social Dynamics of Small-Group Discussions
      • PAR-B.04
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Muxin Zhang, Eric Kuo, Gloriana González

      • Type: Contributed
      • Group work provides valuable opportunities for students to actively participate in classroom conversations. Instructors often emphasize generating and sharing ideas in group work, but how these ideas are shared in small-group discussions can be complicated by social dynamics within that group. In this project, we applied techniques from Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL) to analyze the interpersonal meanings in students’ discourse in a college physics lab section. By examining how students socially positioned themselves in the episode, we found that students steered the group’s conversation not only by explicitly offering ideas, but also by positioning as not-knowing, raising questions, and appealing to authority. This episode provides another example to a growing body of research describing the consequential role of social dynamics in how physics students contribute to small-group discussions.
  • PER: Diverse Investigations  

      • Biases, Limitations and Focus: Student Perspectives on Subjectivity in Physics*
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Randeep Basara, Andrea Wooley, Leander Villarta, Abigail Daane

      • Type: Contributed
      • Descriptions of the nature of science contrast the view of physics as objective, unaffected by human influence. In order to better understand students’ thinking about the nature of physics, we collected responses to the question, “Do you think physics isobjective or subjective?” In this presentation, we compare and contrast the ideas from “Science for All Americans” to students’ ideas about the presence of subjectivity in physics. Students, prior to engaging in conversation about subjectivity, tend to describe physics without reference to human influence. After discussing this question with peers, students acknowledge the individual limitations of human perception and focus in research. We argue that an awareness about the influence of structural and individual subjectivity in classrooms can create a robust scientific community and disrupt the current culture that serves to marginalize groups of people.
      • Assessing Cross-Disciplinary Understanding of Energy Concepts*
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Boudreaux, Todd Haskell, Emily Borda

      • Type: Contributed
      • The ability of students to apply learned ideas in new settings is an implicit assumption that underlies the structure of most programs of study in STEM, in which introductory coursework in a range of fields serves as a foundation for advanced coursework in a more targeted area. A salient example involves an energy-based model for interactions, in which energy is associated with objects, has various forms, is transferred and transformed during interactions, and is conserved. At Western Washington University, we have developed a pair of multiple choice assessments to gauge student learning of such an energy framework in a physics context, and to then assess student ability to apply this framework in a novel chemistry context. We frame these assessments as a way of conceptualizing cross-disciplinary learning and an associated approach to measuring such learning. This talk will describe the development and piloting of the assessments and share preliminary data.
      • Cartoon Clicker Questions in Physics Classrooms to Engage and Enhance Critical Thinking.
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kausiksankar Das
      • Type: Contributed
      • This talk describes a holistic pedagogical approach for classroom engagement using concept cartoons. We will also discuss how classroom students translate theory and fundamental classroom knowledge to authentic application with cutting edge research implemented by undergraduates at a Historically Black University. In our project, we developed and assessed cartoons custom designed for classroom instruction and evaluated student engagement while using the cartoons. We further report on student successes achieved through undergraduate research projects.
      • Three productive ways physics students utilize a digital learning environment
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Elias Euler, Christopher Prytz, Bor Gregorcic

      • Type: Contributed
      • In this paper, we present three types of activity that we have observed during students’ self-directed use of a physics software called Algodoo. In contrast to many common digital learning environments used in physics education, Algodoo allows students to explore a variety of physics phenomena within the same digital learning environment. We describe the characteristics of the three activity types and discuss how the types can be seen as productive for the teaching and learning of physics. For the interested physics teacher and physics education researcher, we present how, in allowing students to creatively engage within physics environments such as Algodoo, physics educators can help students springboard into a range of relevant physics topics while supporting the students’ agency and divergent thinking.
      • Academic Integrity Regarding Online, Out-of-Class Resources: Student and Instructor Interviews

      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brandon James Johnson, Ayush Gupta, Erin Ronayne Sohr, Andrew Elby

      • Type: Contributed
      • Many students’ out-of-class learning experience includes using online and social-media resources such as Khan Academy, YouTube, Chegg, GroupMe, and Wikipedia. Most of these resources emerged in the last few decades, change rapidly, and are used widely. These resources and their use by students are understudied in PER. We conducted semi-structured interviews with seven students and four instructors of university-level introductory physics focusing on how they think about the use of out-of-class resources with respect to ethics and learning. Our preliminary analysis suggests that students’ stances toward academic integrity in the context of out-of-class resources are entangled in nuanced ways with their stances toward learning in the context of the course, instructional expectations, classroom practices, and a variety of extra-curricular constraints experienced by students. We will present empirical evidence for some of these connections that reflect across our student and instructor interviews and discuss their implications for physics education.
      • Dream jobs and desired career paths of physics majors
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Anne Leak, Krystina Williamson, Benjamin Zwickl

      • Type: Contributed
      • Physics can be considered a 21st century liberal arts degree where students learn valuable technical and transferable skills they can apply to a range of careers. As part of the APS PIPELINE Network, we examined fields and sectors physics majors were interested in pursuing, their dream job, and what influenced their career goals. Responses from 178 physics majors at 12 institutions were analyzed using descriptive quantitative approaches for multiple-select questions and emergent thematic qualitative approaches for open-ended questions. Initial findings highlight a diverse range of careers students hoped to pursue, yet these tended to center around research even when students were open to both industry and academic sectors. Furthermore, many students indicated desires for careers that would help the world and provide a supportive working environment. Understanding physics majors’ desired careers and perceptions of what is possible has implications for how we prepare them for their next steps after graduating.
      • Qualitative analysis of students’ perceptions of their self-efficacy
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jillian Mellen, Geraldine Cochran, John Kerrigan, Lydia Prendergast, Antonio Silva

      • Type: Contributed
      • Students' self-efficacy, their confidence in their ability to complete a task, is a good predictor for success and persistence. Previous research indicates that improvements in learning methods can improve student self-efficacy and that classroom dynamics may impact students' self-efficacy by allowing for different kinds of self-efficacy opportunities. In this study, we analyzed interviews from 12 students enrolled in a flipped integral calculus course to understand their perceptions of their self-efficacy and how this related to classroom dynamics and activities. Preliminary findings reveal that experiences in previous math courses, particularly high school, impacted students’ perceptions of their self-efficacy in math both positively and negatively, active learning activities increased students’ confidence in their ability to do math from their perspective, and verbal persuasion (implicit encouragement) increased students’ confidence and was seen as a helpful way to learn.
      • Applying Social Network Analysis to an Online Community of Practice for Teachers
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Nadeau, Bahar Modir, Robynne Lock, William Newton

      • Type: Contributed
      • We take a social network analysis approach to investigate how members of an online teacher community interact with each other through a nine-week classical mechanics summer course. The class, associated with the Master program in physics with teaching emphasis at Texas A&M University-Commerce, requires students to participate in weekly problem solving and biweekly reading reflection discussion boards. We measured the weekly activity level for the community and number of interactions between students, and compared these to the average values determined for the entire semester. We found that the participation of students in problem solving discussions fluctuates from week to week; revealing the activity of the community of practice, influence of student backgrounds, and possible structural features of the course. Comparatively, the reading reflection participation did not show a noticeable variation. In order to gain more insight into our findings we characterized the types of interactions by categorizing student communication.
      • Structures that support students’ identities in informal physics programs
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brean Prefontaine, Claudia Fracchiolla, Claire Mullen, Kathleen Hinko, Shane Bergin

      • Type: Contributed
      • Understanding how one builds a physics identity is an important step to creating structures and practices that support physics students both in and out of the classroom. We have investigated how university students’ physics identities can be fostered through teaching youth in informal physics programs. We collected reflections and interviews from participants in three different informal programs and analyzed them with an operationalized Communities of Practice framework. Our analysis shows that students’ identities can be supported through different structures and practices within each program. We find that students’ personal values aligning with the program’s mission was the biggest predictor of membership, while interactions with members of the community served as the most important mechanism for integration into the community. This work illuminates the specific aspects of informal physics programs that facilitate physics identity formation among the university students who choose to participate.
      • Investigating research themes, partnerships, and funding for the Physics-Education-Research community

      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Rebecca Rosenblatt, Michael Rook

      • Type: Contributed
      • This study will inform the Physics Education Research community about patterns of research topics, partnerships between researchers, and funding sources for the PER community over the last ten years. The study involves a textual analysis of all PERC proceedings between 2010 to 2019 to identify funding sources and determine patterns. PERC proceedings were selected given the central role of the Physics Education Research Conference to the PER community. PERC proceedings represent the community across scope of project from small to large, across stage of project from beginning to finished, and from new researchers to those established in the field. Findings are contrasted with those from the Learning Sciences community to provide context for understanding the significance of patterns. The goal of this work is to provide insight into the community’s history and ten-year trajectory so that the community can consider how to move the field forward in new directions.
      • "Diving into a Void:" Student Views of Research
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Adrienne Traxler, Jason Deibel, Meredith Rodgers

      • Type: Contributed
      • The Applying Scientific Knowledge (ASK) program recruits science and math majors in their second year, who take a shared research methods class and then conduct research with faculty mentors for two or more semesters. Assessment throughout the program studies students' experiences of research, their STEM community development, and their skill development and academic progress. The question guiding this portion of the analysis was: How do students define or describe the concept of research, and how does that change as they advance through the ASK program? Students were interviewed near the end of the methods class (prior to joining labs), then after one or more semesters of research experience. We will present a preliminary analysis of interview themes from the first two cohorts, focusing on the physics majors and their similarities or differences from other students. We find that students have a mix of career-oriented and personal motivations for pursuing research.
      • Gains as a function of pre-test scores
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Walter, Gary Morris, Eleanor Sayre

      • Type: Contributed
      • Using matched PhysPort data, we assess the utility of plotting gains as a function of pre-test scores on the Force Concept Inventory (FCI). Doing so has the advantage of providing nuance regarding differences in populations, whether it be to shed light on the efficacy of instructional methods or equity among different student populations. We empirically compare raw and normalized gains and find for a population of 9,354 students that neither the raw nor the normalized gain is uniform for students of all pre-FCI scores. We suggest alternative methods for quantifying gain, the relative gain, and the relative raw gain, on standardized assessments that overcome this diculty. We compare the relative gain measures to effect size and nd that each contributes to our understanding of gains. The relative gain measures are straightforward to interpret and visualize. We suggest effect size and other gain measures, particularly the relative gain measures, be used in a complementary way to better assess the differences between populations.
      • Analyzing Time-to-Degree for Transfer Students at Michigan State University
      • PAR-C.06
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alyssa Waterson, Rachel Henderson, Marcos Caballero

      • Type: Contributed
      • Earning a bachelor's degree is expensive and time-consuming. Many undergraduate students pursue Advanced Placement (AP) courses in high school or transfer coursework from degree-granting institutions. However, the effect of those transfer courses on the time that it takes students to graduate (time-to-degree) is currently not well understood. We have investigated how incoming transfer courses impact students’ time-to-degree by defining three independent groups of transfer students: (1) those entering with college level transfer courses, (2) those with only AP level transfer courses, and (3) those without any transfer credit. The time-to-degree has been shown to be statistically different for each of these groups, with students who enter with college level transfer courses graduating the earliest. We have explored differences in time-to-degree for various demographic information (e.g. gender, race/ethnicity). In this presentation, we will discuss these results in addition to the results from regression models that predict a student’s time-to-degree.
  • PER: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion II  

      • Impact of Learning Environment on Male and Female Students’ Physics Self-Efficacy, Interest and Identity in Calculus-Based Introductory Physics Courses

      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yangqiuting Li, Kyle Whitcomb, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • Students’ self-efficacy, interest and identity in physics can influence their learning, performance and career decisions. Therefore, we investigated the impact of learning environment on male and female students’ physics self-efficacy, interest and identity in calculus-based introductory physics. Findings can be useful in creating equitable and inclusive learning environments in which all students can thrive. We thank the National Science Foundation for support.
      • Using Learning Assistants in a Multidisciplinary Algebra-Based Physics Classroom
      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kathryn McGill, Sujata Krishna

      • Type: Contributed
      • We present student learning gains in each of a two-part introductory algebra-based physics sequence for a multidisciplinary student population taught with and without the use of undergraduate learning assistants (LAs). We report on our pilot program design, inspired by the Learning Assistant Alliance model and adjusted to suit the particular considerations of this physics sequence, including student population, class size, and existing course structure. We specifically discuss the results of assigning our LAs to submit written feedback to their groups, as well as issues arising from whether or not the group work is for a grade. Additionally, we discuss the development of our LAs throughout this program, closing with lessons learned and plans for Fall 2020. As we are extremely pleased with the results of this program, we plan to continue it and are glad to offer our experience to the physics teaching community.
      • Characteristics of Institutions with Learning Assistant Programs: An Equity Investigation*
      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alexa McQuade, Jayson Nissen, Manher Jariwala

      • Type: Contributed
      • Learning assistant (LA) programs support instructors transforming their courses to use evidence-based instructional strategies. We investigated the types of schools that have LA programs to better understand how the distribution of those programs supports excellent and inclusive education across institutions. We used the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education (CCIHE) public database to compare schools with and without LA programs, looking at a variety of institutional characteristics to determine whether the distribution of LA programs is equitable across different types of institutions. We will discuss the implications of our findings and identify areas for future research using critical quantitative perspectives in physics education research.
      • Toward characterizing the demographics of introductory physics courses [1]
      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Raphael Mondesir, Amy Robertson

      • Type: Contributed
      • Recent work by Kanim and Cid [2] suggests that the data used in PER is not representative of students enrolled in physics courses at the national level. Using university-level demographics, Kanim and Cid showed that PER studies oversample from white, wealthy, mathematically-prepared populations of students. What we do not yet know is whether these university-level demographics are representative of introductory physics courses, which are a primary site of research in PER. In this talk, we present data from nine US institutions, comparing the composition of introductory physics classes to aggregate university demographics across a number of social markers, including gender, race/ethnicity, and socio-economic status. Our aim is to make progress in characterizing the demographics of introductory physics courses, which is imperative to deepening our understanding of how social disparity is manifested in physics classrooms and the institutions that host them. We discuss limitations of our approach, including problematizing our use of statistics to make sense of who is enrolling in introductory physics.
      • Physics Career Expectations and Diversity among Secondary School Students
      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Elizabeth Parisi, Giovanna Masia, Desaree' Vaughan, AJ Richards

      • Type: Contributed
      • There is a dramatic underrepresentation of ethnic minorities and women within physics. The reasons for this underrepresentation are not fully understood. To explore this, we have surveyed high school physics students in order to investigate their perception of the various physics career paths. We paid special attention in our analysis to how a student’s demographic data affected these variables. In this presentation, we will detail the trends we found between the students’ perception of various physics career paths, their likelihood to pursue a career in physics, and their demographics.
      • How technocracy becomes visible in engineering learning assistants’ role-plays*
      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Hannah Sabo, Jennifer Radoff, Chandra Turpen, Andrew Elby, Ayush Gupta

      • Type: Contributed
      • Technocracy, a problematic world view that values technical abilities and solutions over social ones, pervades engineering. In our pedagogy seminar for Learning Assistants (LA) in an engineering design course, we engaged LAs in role-plays, semi-improvised performances guided by a prompt, around troubles faced by a student team. We draw on audio-video records of a role-play and following discussion from our pedagogy seminar in which LAs, playing as students or an LA, had to contend with both social and technical issues. Using tools from discourse analysis, we analyze how technocracy is both reproduced and challenged during the role-play and following class discussion. The discussion allowed the LAs to reflect on their assumptions and decisions during the role-play. We will present implications for the design and facilitation of role-plays as well as for research studying STEM cultures. *Work supported by NSF Grant 1733649.
      • The Impact of Social Comparison Concern on Grades
      • PAR-B.06
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Srividya Suresh, Andrew Heckler

      • Type: Contributed
      • Social Comparison Concern (SCC) is a measurement of how negatively students compare themselves respect to their classmates based on their skill and knowledge of the class. Previous research found that female students, underrepresented minorities, and first generation students reported higher SCC on average, SCC was moderately (negatively) correlated with grade, and SCC mediated the effect of belonging on grade. To further understand SCC, we designed an online intervention by adapting prior motivational intervention designs, and administered a semester-long online SCC pilot intervention study for the first course in the introductory calculus physics sequence at the Ohio State University. Students were divided into SCC treatment or no-treatment control conditions by lecture section. We report on evidence that SCC may be impacting midterm and final exam scores (and vice-versa), especially for lower-scoring students, but the results of our pilot treatment remain inconclusive, and we will discuss our next steps.
  • PER: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion III  

      • How Does The Learning Environment Predict Student Outcomes In Algebra-Based Introductory Physics Courses?

      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Sonja Cwik, Kyle Whitcomb, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • Student outcomes in introductory physics courses influence their retention in STEM disciplines and future career aspirations. This study investigates how the learning environment predicts male and female students’ outcomes, including grade, self-efficacy, interest, and identity. These findings can be useful to provide support and to create an equitable and inclusive learning environment to help all students excel in algebra-based physics courses.
      • Physics-specific discourses and white identity: Examples from classroom video*
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Wilford Hairston, Sarah McKagan, Amy Robertson, Rachel Scherr

      • Type: Contributed
      • Sociocultural theory has articulated the central role that identity plays in learning, and has pointed to some of the ways in which instructional practices actively interact with discipline-specific identities. The lack of diversity and inclusion within physics suggests that physics instructional practices are actively centering particular identities while marginalizing others. In this talk, we use classroom video to illustrate ways in which physics-specific discourses mediate a particular type of physics identity, one centered around whiteness as a historical and material reality.
      • Science cafes as a collaborative, informal event for professional learining.
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Mossy Kelly, Sophie Eden, Bianca Moone

      • Type: Contributed
      • The focus of the talk will be on two events that were run mid-way through a 12-week laboratory course. These events, named ‘Science Cafés’, were used as an informal way to get students and staff to gather together to collaboratively work on professional development. The theme of the first event was to reflect on the things students do and recognise aspects of professional learning within that experience. The second event was focussed on writing resumés for potential job applications in the future. In the collaborative spirit, this talk will be co-delivered with a student who attended these events who had this to say: “The science cafés were chances to discuss with people who’ve hired, and been hired by other academics, to talk through what we’ve done, and have the things which we as students see as routine and part of being a student, actually being very valid scientific experience.”
      • Impact of Peer Interaction on Male and Female Students’ Sense of Belonging in Introductory Physics

      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Alysa Malespina, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • We investigate how students’ perceptions of interactions with their peers in introductory physics courses predict their sense of belonging in those courses using a validated survey. We also compare male and female students’ perceptions of peer interactions when they worked in mixed gender vs. same gender groups. Findings can be useful in creating learning environments in which all students have a high sense of belonging and can thrive while learning physics. We thank the National Science Foundation for support.
      • Perceiving whiteness and masculinity in physics teaching and learning
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Sarah McKagan, Wilford Hairston, Amy Robertson, Rachel Scherr

      • Type: Contributed
      • In the Centering Project, we are studying how whiteness and masculinity show up in the physics classroom, through video of classroom interactions among students and between students and instructors, and in the content and practices of physics, including curriculum. In this talk we present results of this analysis that we think will be relevant for physics educators.
      • Cultural Exchange events
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ruth Saunders
      • Type: Contributed
      • This talk describes some events designed to share culture among students and faculty. In order to enhance the participation of women and minoritized students and to elevate the experiences of all students, we must find ways to allow students to bring their whole selves into their studies. The illusion that Physics has no culture is damaging especially those who do not feel welcome. By discussing culture and sharing our culture we can strengthen connections between students and faculty.
      • When the Gatekeeper Says No: Mechanics Students’ Resilience and Success
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Devyn Shafer, Tim Stelzer

      • Type: Contributed
      • What happens to aspiring engineers who do not pass their introductory mechanics class? At UIUC, approximately 11 percent of introductory mechanics engineering students earn a D, F, or W. Just 31 percent of these students go on to earn an engineering degree, compared with the 87 percent of students who pass the course on their first attempt. While most students who perform poorly in their introductory physics class choose a non-engineering major or leave the university altogether, there is a unique subset of initially struggling students who choose to persist in an engineering major. We interviewed engineering seniors in this group to learn about their experiences as engineering students who overcame an initial setback. In this talk, we will discuss big-picture outcomes for students who retake this fundamental course as well as insights into the difficulties some students face and what resources may help them succeed.
      • Creating interdisciplinary pathways into quantum careers: opportunities for physics departments

      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Michael Verostek, Benjamin Zwickl

      • Type: Contributed
      • Aligning with the National Quantum Initiative and NSF’s “Quantum Leap,” we are working toward an interdisciplinary approach to quantum information science and technology (QIST) education. We present results from a single institution based on interviews with faculty and administrators in engineering, computing, and the sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology, which suggest that it is feasible and desirable to provide STEM majors with accessible degree pathways that embed quantum-related electives. Combined with results from studies on the skills of quantum industry employees, our results indicate a minor or concentration in QIST provides STEM majors with sufficient preparation for quantum careers, and a new major in QIST is unnecessary. Physics departments could play an essential role in such programs by offering an introductory QIST course open to all STEM majors that prepares students for advanced QIST coursework. We also provide insight into structural barriers that might hinder implementation of this arrangement.
      • In A Physics Curriculum Only Introductory Physics Course Grades Show Gender Differences
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Kyle Whitcomb, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • Analysis of institutional data for physics majors showing predictive relationships between required mathematics and physics courses in various years is important for contemplating how the courses build on each other and whether there is need to make changes to the curriculum for the majors to strengthen these relationships. We use 15 years of institutional data at a large research university to investigate how introductory physics and mathematics courses predict male and female physics majors' performance on required advanced physics and mathematics courses. We used Structure Equation Modeling (SEM) to investigate these predictive relationships and find that among introductory and advanced physics and mathematics courses, there are gender differences in performance in favor of male students only in the introductory physics courses after controlling for high school GPA. We found that a measurement invariance fully holds in a multi-group SEM by gender, so it was possible to carry out analysis with gender mediated by introductory physics and high school GPA. Moreover, we find that these introductory physics courses that have gender differences do not predict performance in advanced physics courses. Also, introductory mathematics courses predict performance in advanced mathematics courses which in turn predict performance in advanced physics courses. Furthermore, apart from the introductory physics courses that do not predict performance in future physics courses, there is a strong predictive relationship between the sophomore, junior and senior level physics courses.
      • PER doctoral programs and women bachelor’s degree recipients in physics
      • PAR-E.05
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Susan White, Gary White

      • Type: Contributed
      • It has been shown previously* that PhD physics departments that maintain a doctoral degree specialization in Physics Education Research (PER) for 10 years produce significantly more physics bachelor's degree recipients than PhD departments which do not support such a specialty, even after accounting for department size via their respective numbers of FTE faculty members. Here we report on related work, wherein we investigate the correlation between sustained PER PhD programs in physics departments and the number and proportion of undergraduate physics degrees granted to women as reported by those departments. We use data from past issues of the GradsSchoolShopper publication, and from the surveys of physics departments conducted by Statistical Research Center of the American Institute of Physics.
  • PER: Student Content Understanding, Problem-Solving and Reasoning  

      • The Conceptual Framework Approach for Modeling Deep Learning in Physics
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lei Bao, Joseph Fritchman, Kathleen Koenig

      • Type: Contributed
      • Research has shown that traditional instruction often falls short of helping students develop deep understanding in learning physics. To support the assessment and instruction that promote knowledge integration and deep learning, a new modeling approach,the Conceptual Framework, has been developed, which establishes models of plausible student knowledge structures that focus on the core idea(s) and sub-dimensions for a given concept. Assessments based on conceptual frameworks focus on determining what connections students exist for students in both familiar and novel problem formats, while instruction based on conceptual frameworks suggests which material to teaching in order to best facilitate building expert-like connections within the students’ knowledge structures. This presentation will introduce the conceptual framework approach and review the recent studies that have shown promising outcomes from applying this method.
      • Shared Resources in Student Understanding of Spherical Unit Vectors: Theory
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ying Cao, Brant Hinrichs

      • Type: Contributed
      • The resources framework has been applied in physics education research in many different contexts. While it focuses on the thinking of individuals, in this work we instead apply an expanded framework called shared resources to look at a small group as they solve problems together related to spherical unit vectors in the context of upper-division E&M. Using examples from this think-out-loud interview, we illustrate what we mean by the theoretical lens of shared resources: what they are, how they are shared, and what role they can play in helping students make sense of a difficult physics topic. This work extends previous work by including more substantial and more in-depth analysis from a richer example.
      • Spanning the space of student ideas on change-of-basis in quantum
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Giaco Corsiglia, Benjamin Schermerhorn, Homeyra Sadaghiani, Gina Passante, Steve Pollock

      • Type: Contributed
      • Representing a state in an observable’s eigenbasis encodes probabilities for measurement outcomes and facilitates computation of useful quantities such as expectation values. Converting state vectors between bases is therefore a key skill for students in quantum mechanics. Our research in upper-division quantum mechanics courses at three diverse institutions investigates student understanding of basis and change-of-basis in the context of spin-1/2 systems. Our investigation focuses on procedural and conceptual written questions as well as student reasoning interviews. We identify the range of methods students employ when changing basis, illuminate student understanding of the structure and meaning of a basis expansion, enumerate student ideas about whether and how changing basis affects the state, and examine how students perceive notation as indicative of choice of basis. Together, these results paint a broad qualitative picture of the various ways students grapple with basis and change-of-basis, with potential implications for instruction.
      • Relating solutions to the heat equation to the underlying physics
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mieke De Cock, Paul van Kampen, Sofie Van den Eynde, Johan Deprez, Martin Goedhart

      • Type: Contributed
      • Interpreting and understanding the way students use and understand the mathematics used in physics is a central theme in Physics Education Research. Physical phenomena described by partial differential equations (PDEs) provide a promising context to study how students combine physics and mathematics. An example is the description of heat flow and temperature distribution in a one-dimensional rod, which can be described by the (1D) heat equation, together with an initial condition (IC), and boundary conditions (BCs). In this contribution, we present data from an interview study where we gave students the mathematical description of a system (PDE, IC and BCs) together with the analytical solution. We asked to describe the time evolution of the system, both in mathematical and physical terms. Our analysis shows that students’ reasoning is mainly mathematical with little reference to the underlying physics and that most students do not connect their mathematical statements to physical processes.
      • Assessment of Student Learning of the Hand Rules in Electromagnetism
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yikun Han*, Lei Bao, Feipeng Pi

      • Type: Contributed
      • In the Chinese high school physics curriculum, the Ampere's rule, the left-hand rule, and the right-hand rule are used to determine the direction of the magnetic field, the ampere and Lorentz force, and the direction of the electric current. However, without a deep understanding of the basis of these rules, which arises from the concept of cross-product, it is easy for students to confuse these rules. This leads to inefficiency and difficulty in problem-solving, which is also the difficulty faced by most teachers. The central idea of these three rules is the cross product; therefore, by guiding students to establish the concept of cross product can cultivate deep learning of electromagnetism knowledge. In this presentation, a conceptual framework of the hand rules will be instructed along with an assessment tool that evaluates students’ understanding of the mastery of the three rules at different phases of their learning.
      • Shared Resources in Student Understanding of Spherical Unit Vectors: Examples
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brant Hinrichs, Ying Cao

      • Type: Contributed
      • The previous talk introduced and elaborated on the theoretical framework of shared resources in the context of students solving problems about spherical unit vectors in upper-division E&M. In this companion talk, we discuss additional examples that we have identified from three small group think-out-loud interviews on the same topic, and go into greater detail about how these resources speak to their ability to navigate through some of the difficulties of this extremely challenging concept. We conclude with some implications for possible instructional strategies.
      • Technical-Vocational Education (TVE) Students' Mental Models about Electric Circuits
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Voltaire Mistades, Jasmin Elena Orolfo

      • Type: Contributed
      • The study looked into the conceptions and misconceptions about electric circuits of students taking an electricity-related program in a technical-vocational education (TVE) high school. The study showed that majority of the students have misconceptions and incomplete conceptions about electric circuits and the elements that make a circuit work. While they showed familiarity with actual circuit elements, they lacked familiarity with the symbols used in an electric circuit. The TVE students had varied understanding about how energy flows in an electric circuit. Some students subscribed to the Unipolar Model, the idea that electrical energy flows from the negative terminal only. The Bipolar Model was also present among the students, with the students describing the current from the positive terminal moving faster than the current that flows out of the negative terminal. The students' self-constructed idea about what happens when the energy reaches the load is analogous to a two-way traffic model.
      • From Cartesian to Hilbert space: Improving understanding of quantum bases
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Schermerhorn, Giaco Corsiglia, Homeyra Sadaghiani, Steven Pollock, Gina Passante

      • Type: Contributed
      • The meaning and representation of basis is fundamental to many quantum mechanics topics, including probability, measurement, and time evolution. Furthermore, students are often required to change the basis of a state in order to gain other information about a system. Data collected from “spins-first” courses across three institutions has illuminated a variety of challenges for students, related to procedures, interpretation, and notation. To help improve student understanding, we designed an activity that makes an analogy between spin basis vectors and more familiar two-dimensional Cartesian unit vectors. In this activity, students draw vectors for a state and discover that changing the basis is analogous to using a different set of coordinate axes to represent the same state. We provide evidence that this activity supported students in their understanding of basis representation and in the procedure of changing basis.
      • Inevitably Uncertain: Student reasoning about measurement uncertainty
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Courtney White, Emily Stump, N.G. Holmes, Gina Passante

      • Type: Contributed
      • Measurement is a concept that students are familiar with well before they enter university. However, measurement and uncertainty are widely misinterpreted by students in physics laboratory settings. In this work we investigate student reasoning about thedistribution present in experimental data. We analyze semi-structured interviews with advanced physics students where they were asked to explain the distribution in a fictitious data set. Our coding focuses on whether or not students think there is a true value that can be measured and how they believe the distribution can be reduced (or eliminated).
      • Assessment of Knowledge Integration in Learning Geometric Optics
      • PAR-A.06
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yue Xiao*, JianWen Xiong, Lei Bao

      • Type: Contributed
      • A key strategy in solving geometric optics problems is drawing ray diagrams. However, through interviews with middle school teachers in China, it appears that the ray diagram is not emphasized in instruction due to the fact that most problems homework and exams can be solved by memorizing the final results of special cases (such as the three special rays that go into a lens). As a result, students did not make the connection between the principles of geometric optics and the final results that they memorized. In this talk, a conceptual framework on geometric optics is introduced to map out students’ knowledge structures. Based on the conceptual framework, a multiple-choice test is designed to further probe students’ conceptual understanding. Assessment outcomes will be discussed to shed light on new instruction methods that emphasize the ray diagram method for achieving deep understanding of geometric optics.
  • PER: Student Content Understanding, Problem-Solving and Reasoning III  

      • Counterintuitive Basic Electric Circuits Test
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nuri Balta
      • Type: Contributed
      • The purpose of this study is to develop a test to assess students’ level of counter-intuitiveness in basic electric circuits. Data from four samples were gathered and used to develop and validate the counterintuitive basic electric circuit test (CBECT). The initial version of the CBECT was administered to the first sample and data collected from this sample were used for pilot study. The aim of the data collected from the second sample was to comb out the items that were not counterintuitive. The data collected from the third sample were used for concurrent validity issue while from the fourth sample were used for the test-retest reliability analysis. Finally, 26 items that can be used to determine counterintuitive cases in basic electric circuits in high school and college levels were constructed.
      • Identifying Student Conceptual Resources for Understanding Electric Circuits*
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jonathan Corcoran, Lauren Bauman, Amy Robertson

      • Type: Contributed
      • Most research focusing on student ideas about electric circuits frames these ideas in terms of misconceptions, difficulties, and misunderstandings. Our project reports student resources for understanding electric circuits, ideas that we consider to be the “beginnings” of foundational understanding. In this talk, we will present four conceptual resources for understanding electric circuits based on our analysis of students’ written responses to conceptual circuits questions. Our aim is to add to instructors’ existing knowledge of students’ ideas, supporting them in identifying and building on student resources for understanding electric circuits.
      • Exploring Graduate Students' Understanding of Entropy
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nate Crossette, Michael Vignal, Bethany Wilcox

      • Type: Contributed
      • As a first step in a larger study of student difficulties in upper-division thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, we present the results of think-aloud interviews with graduate students on a set of entropy related questions. The four interview questions were developed to probe student understanding of entropy as a pressure towards equilibrium, as a quantity maximized in equilibrium, as a connection between microstates and macrostates, and as a macroscopic state-function. Exploring graduate students' understanding entropy and their ability to solve problems and reason with entropic arguments will provide insights into how physicists develop a mature understanding of entropy as a physical quantity. Specifically, we hope to see if new conceptual difficulties emerge as students progress to graduate school, and whether difficulties seen in undergraduate courses persist, evolve, or cease to present issues in the graduate setting.
      • Action, Reaction, and Newton’s Third Law
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Joseph Fritchman, Bao Lei

      • Type: Contributed
      • Student understanding of Newton’s third law and causality are intrinsically linked. It is known that using 'action-reaction' language when teaching Newton’s third law may imply a causal relation yet that is exactly the way the law is still presented in textbooks and introductory physics courses. 20 undergraduate and 22 graduate students were interviewed on their understanding of Newton’s third law and causality. Nearly all students interviewed at both levels recite Newton’s third law using similar 'action-reaction' language. Most students attribute cause to the acting or dominate force (and call it the action force) while stating that the other force must be the reaction force, and over half of both groups of students would incorrectly identify the pair(s) of forces interacting when more than two forces were present. However, graduate students were more likely to recognize a contradiction in their understanding of causality and Newton’s third law and correct their responses.
      • Student conceptual resources for understanding kinematics
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brynna Hansen, Cheyenne Broadfoot, Amy Robertson

      • Type: Contributed
      • Physics education research on student understanding of kinematics has largely focused on misconceptions and difficulties. Our project reports student resources for understanding kinematics -- ideas that we consider to be the “beginnings” of sophisticatedunderstandings. Our preliminary analysis highlighted four common resources that students are using to solve kinematics problems. In this talk, we will elaborate on the resources used most often by students and give examples from our preliminary research.
      • Secondary Student Perspectives of Quantum Physics
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zac Patterson, Lin Ding

      • Type: Contributed
      • Secondary physics curricula predominantly focus on physics content established prior to the 20th century (e.g., Newtonian mechanics, conservation of energy). Rarely are students exposed to modern physics topics (e.g., quantum mechanics, special relativity) in their formal education. Even so, students inevitably encounter terms such as “quantum” and “quantum physics” in their everyday lives. The aim of this study is to provide insight on secondary student perspectives of the terms “quantum” and “quantum physics”. While there is a body of research available that analyzes university physics majors’ perspectives of quantum physics topics, little research has been done at the secondary level. Clinical interviews of students at a Midwestern high school are conducted to establish commonalities among perspective of quantum physics topics.
      • Investigating high school students' understanding of wave optics
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Maja Planinic, Karolina Matejak Cvenic, Ana Susac, Lana Ivanjek, Katarina Jelicic

      • Type: Contributed
      • Wave optics is a difficult teaching topic that was up to now usually investigated on university students. In Croatia, this topic is compulsory for a significant fraction of high school students, aged 18-19 years. In 2018. we started a four-year research project that includes investigation of high school students' difficulties with wave optics, construction of a new diagnostic instrument (Conceptual Test on Wave Optics), and development and testing of an experimental teaching sequence on wave optics. The final goal of the project is to investigate the effect of the new teaching approach, which includes several students' investigative experiments, on students' conceptual understanding of wave optics and on their scientific reasoning. Some preliminary results of the project will be presented, including findings from the 27 semi-structured interviews and from the process of the CTWO development. The most frequent students' conceptual difficulties regarding interference, diffraction and polarization of light will be discussed.
      • Investigating and Improving Student Understanding of Quantum Mechanical Observables and their Corresponding Operators in Dirac Notation

      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Chandralekha Singh, Emily Marshman

      • Type: Contributed
      • Here we focus on an investigation that suggests that, even though Dirac notation is used extensively, many advanced undergraduate and Ph.D. students in physics have difficulty expressing the identity operator and other Hermitian operators corresponding to physical observables in Dirac notation. We first describe the difficulties students have with expressing the identity operator and other Hermitian operators corresponding to observables in Dirac notation. We then discuss how the difficulties found via written surveys and individual interviews were used as a guide in the development and validation of a Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) to help students develop a good grasp of these concepts. We also discuss the effectiveness of the QuILT based on in-class evaluations. We thank the National Science Foundation for support.
      • Investigating the impact of a bottom-up training on Newton’s 2nd Law
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by J. Caleb Speirs, Thanh Lê, Shawn Ell, Robyn Leuteritz

      • Type: Contributed
      • Some physics questions prove difficult for students even after research-based instruction and demonstration of relevant conceptual knowledge. Recent studies have indicated that reflexive, bottom-up reasoning processes seemingly unrelated to conceptual understanding may be responsible for these difficulties. These studies also suggest that attending to these bottom-up processes during instruction may improve performance to a greater degree than attending solely to top-down, analytical reasoning. It is important to leverage these findings to produce meaningful improvements to instruction. Towards that end, we have investigated the impact of a training targeted at reflexive, bottom-up reasoning processes on questions related to balanced forces and compared results to a more standard, top-down approach to the same topic. This talk will relate the findings and suggest implications for future work.
      • Tutorial to connect mathematics and physics of the heat equation
      • PAR-F.07
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sofie Van den Eynde, Mieke De Cock, Johan Deprez, Martin Goedhart

      • Type: Contributed
      • We developed a guided-inquiry tutorial to foster connections between mathematics and physics in the context of undergraduate thermodynamics, specifically the heat equation. Based on literature and empirical reasons, we formulated design principles that guided the development, including promoting graphical reasoning, stimulating thinking about physical meaning first, and paying explicit attention to the mathematical and physical aspects of concepts and ideas, and as such promote interdisciplinary connections. We determined the effectiveness of the design principles by testing the tutorial in teaching-learning interviews with three groups of three students each. In this session, we present the design principles and how they impacted the students’ reasoning process. We aim to inform practitioners in the field who teach this subject, but furthermore anyone who wants to strengthen the connections between mathematics and physics in the topic they are teaching.
  • PER: Student Content Understanding, Problem-Solving and Reasoning IV  

      • Brief Concept Survey of Units/Unit Systems in Introductory Physics Abstract
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nathaniel Amos, David Harris, Jeff Hutchinson

      • Type: Contributed
      • Proficiency in units/dimensional analysis is a useful skill in the sciences and engineering, and STEM instructors often presume competence from their students in this area. However, unit analysis techniques and unit systems are not always formally taught, and even with explicit emphasis during instruction, many students lack the repeated exposure necessary to master them. To assess student understanding of units and unit systems, we administered a brief, itemized survey to N=53 calculus-based introductory university physics students. The survey was intended to uncover possible misconceptions and identify previously unknown obstacles to student success within this topic. Our results suggest that as many as half of surveyed participants may not recognize the adaptability of symbolic physical equations to different unit systems. Furthermore, a similar proportion failed to eliminate non-viable answer choices involving analytic functions with units inside their arguments. Consequently, we believe units/dimensional analysis is a topic ripe for further investigation.
      • Impact of Peer-Led Recitation Sections in Introductory Physics
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Rebecca Forrest, Jacqueline Hawkins, Donna Pattison, Monica Martens, Shuo Chen

      • Type: Contributed
      • Peer-led recitation sections were implemented in introductory algebra-based physics courses to improve student success. Recitation attendance is required depending on student’s score on a diagnostic exam taken during the first two weeks of class. Recitations are led by two undergraduate Peer Facilitators, limited to about 25 students per section, and focus on problem-solving in small groups. An analysis of 2,738 students in first semester introductory algebra-based physics courses shows a positive correlation between recitation attendance and final exam score for the targeted students. Recitation structure and analysis results will be presented.
      • Investigating the role of cognitive reflection in following reasoning chains*
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Beth Lindsey, Werner Hager V, MacKenzie Stetzer

      • Type: Contributed
      • As part of a multi-institution collaboration, we are investigating the efficacy of educational interventions rooted in dual-process theories of reasoning (DPToR). In prior work, we examined the extent to which students are able to follow and infer conclusions from reasoning chains that have been provided to them. In order to explore this issue, we developed a collection of tasks that are administered online to large populations of students in introductory calculus-based courses. We have previously reported that students who themselves respond correctly to the base task will be more likely to follow the correct reasoning chain provided. In this talk, we examine the factors that influence students to set aside their own reasoning and adopt correct reasoning when it is shared with them. The relation of our findings to DPToR, and the implications of our results for instruction and curriculum development will be discussed.
      • Insights into student understanding of statistical mechanics
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by William Lo
      • Type: Contributed
      • As part of our effort to develop a concept inventory for statistical mechanics, we have interviewed a number of students who have taken a thermal physics course, at both the undergraduate and graduate level, about their understanding of the statistical mechanics topics taught in the thermal physics curriculum. The questions asked during the interviews were formulated with input from experts in the field, and will later be fleshed out into multiple-choice questions. Here, we report some of our intermediate findings about the students understanding of some of the topics.
      • Framework for the Natures of Covariational Reasoning in Introductory Physics
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Alexis Olsho, Charlotte Zimmerman, Suzanne White Brahmia

      • Type: Contributed
      • Covariational reasoning--how a change in one quantity is related to a change in another quantity (e.g., a 1/r potential, or the exponential decay with time of a charged capacitor)--is integral to how scientists model the physical world. It is also a skill we expect students to develop as a result of introductory physics instruction. Little research has been done to characterize physics experts' covariational reasoning. Our research suggests that physics experts use a number of strategies--distinct from those of mathematics experts--that optimize thinking about physical quantities and how they relate to each other. We present a framework that describes physics expert covariational reasoning in introductory-level physics contexts as an important first step toward an understanding of students' covariational reasoning, how students' covariational reasoning changes over the course of physics instruction, and how instruction can be designed to help develop this important type of reasoning.
      • The associations between conceptual learning, physics identity and social interdependence
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Miguel Rodriguez-Velazquez, Geoff Potvin

      • Type: Contributed
      • This study takes place in a Modeling Instruction Introductory Physics I course and investigates whether students’ social interdependence experiences are associated to semester-long conceptual and physics identity gains. In Modeling Instruction students spend the majority of class time working in small groups leading to varying levels of task and outcome interdependence with other group members. Detailed data were collected to measure pre to post conceptual and identity gains as well as their reported task and outcome interdependence for each of their assigned groups. Students’ individualism and cooperation beliefs were also collected as they have been shown to be correlated with social interdependence. Using the mean of students’ task and outcome interdependence throughout the course, linear regressions were conducted to find correlations with the pre to post semester differences in students’ conceptual and physics identity. A significant shift in student’s pre to post semester cooperation beliefs was also observed.
      • Transfer from Discrete to Continuous Inner-Products in a Computational Course
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Christian Solorio, David Roundy, Corinne Manogue

      • Type: Contributed
      • Because a “spins-first” approach is becoming a more common method of teaching quantum mechanics, we want to know how the knowledge of discrete spin systems might help student’s understanding of continuous quantum systems. Leveraging computation, where wavefunctions are necessarily discretized, is a promising strategy of exploring this. During the junior-year of Oregon State University’s physics curriculum, students take a computational lab course in parallel with the “spins-first” lecture course. In this computational lab, students solve quantum problems by pair-programming in Python. We observed three pairs of students in class while they worked on a computational task of taking inner products of wavefunctions and basis states. In this talk, we will discuss the concepts of inner products students transferred from the discrete case used in the lecture course to the continuous case used in the computational lab and how they implemented these mathematical and physical concepts into their code.
      • Scaffolding student exploration of alternative approaches*
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by MacKenzie Stetzer, Ryan Moyer, J. Caleb Speirs, Beth Lindsey, Mila Kryjevskaia

      • Type: Contributed
      • A growing body of research in physics education indicates that the nature of human reasoning itself may impact student performance on physics questions. Analysis of student reasoning patterns through the lens of dual-process theories of reasoning (DPToR) suggests that students may struggle to engage analytical processing productively when responding to a physics question that contains salient distracting features. As part of a larger effort to investigate and support student reasoning in physics, we have used reasoning chain construction tasks in order gain insight into students’ initial perceptions of viable approaches for solving a qualitative physics question and to examine the impact of guiding students to explore alternative approaches before revisiting that physics question. In this talk, preliminary results will be presented and implications for research-based curriculum development aligned with DPToR will also be discussed.
      • Similarities and Differences between Unprompted and Prompted Student-generated Diagrams
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Michael Vignal, Bethany Wilcox

      • Type: Contributed
      • Diagraming physical scenarios is ubiquitous in physics problem solving and a key focus of physics education. In this talk, we discuss and compare unprompted and prompted diagrams generated by 19 physics majors (ranging from lower-division to graduate students) during one-on-one problem-solving interviews. These interviews included multiple-choice introductory-level physics problems (that neither contained nor asked for diagrams) followed by explicit diagraming tasks for similar scenarios. We discuss patterns and surprises in student-generated diagrams as well as implications for instruction and assessment.
      • Shift Toward Scientific Reasoning in the Introductory Physics Lab
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by John Walkup, Roger Key, Avery Sheldon, Michael Walkup

      • Type: Contributed
      • The authors present samples of a complete lab sequence developed for introductory physics labs that target industrial statistical analysis and scientific reasoning as primary learning objectives. This shift in approach replaces traditional verification of lecture content with the more industrial practice of estimating unknown values through statistics and error analysis. These activities place students in the role of lab designers, using data-driven decision making -- which is explicitly taught -- to optimize lab procedures. Most importantly, the learning objectives for each lab are tailored to generate a broad range of skills developed incrementally throughout the semester. Four of the activities developed for the sequence garnered publication in refereed physics education journals, with one representing a Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience (CURES) activity. Benefits include a tightened adherence to ISO and NIST definitions and procedures, reduced equipment demands, a heightened career focus, and explicit instruction in writing.
      • Student reasoning about integration of charge density
      • PAR-G.06
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Paul van Kampen, Leanne Doughty

      • Type: Contributed
      • Charge distributions provide an early example where students need to apply integration, first encountered in a calculus course, in a physics context. Where mathematics courses typically focus on techniques for finding antiderivatives, in physics courses both the function (say the linear charge density) and the product of the function at a point and the differential of the integrating variable (say the infinitesimal length) tend to have physical meaning (the charge on that length). We have investigated responses of students to different questions about charge density. We asked them to describe how they would obtain the total charge on a nonuniformly charged rod, to interpret definite integrals of the linear charge density in the context of a charged rod, and to calculate the charge on a rod or disk for a given charge density distribution. We have identified a number of inconsistencies in students’ reasoning and explore possible reasons for these.
  • PER: Student and Instructor Support & Professional Development, Program and Institutional Change  

      • Studying student reasoning in an ISLE-based classroom
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sheehan Ahmed, Diane Jammula, Joshua Rutberg, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Contributed
      • In this talk we present data collected in two introductory physics courses (algebra-based and calculus-based) using the ISLE approach at Rutgers, Newark. The data come from students’ solutions of traditional physics problems evaluated using a rubric that assesses student reasoning abilities, such as ability to communicate, to use different representations consistently, and to evaluate their answer. We track students through one semester and analyze their progress using weekly assessments and course exams.
      • Research Results and Best Practices for GTA Preparation
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Emily Alicea-Munoz
      • Type: Contributed
      • Graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) are essential in the teaching of introductory physics at many universities, and have been so for over a century. However, no formal efforts to prepare GTAs for their teaching responsibilities existed before roughly 1970, and only the last three decades have seen systematic research on the best methods of GTA training. In this talk, I provide a brief summary of the most salient results from research in GTA preparation, and synthesize the most important recommendations from the literature into the six (plus one) principles for best practices in GTA development.
      • ISLE-based reforms in an urban public university
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Diane Jammula, Sheehan Ahmed, Joshua Rutberg, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Contributed
      • This talk will describe the innovations that we made in our introductory physics courses at Rutgers, Newark (algebra-based and calculus-based) using the ISLE approach. In the spring of 2019 we ran two pilot sections of ISLE-based labs and in the fall of 2019 we implemented whole course reforms in two of our introductory courses with over 400 students. The reforms included revisions in student activities in all three parts of the courses - lectures (large room meetings), recitations (small room meetings) and laboratories. We provided professional development for the 12 instructors and 20 Learning Assistants teaching these courses in a pre-semester workshop and weekly preparation meetings. We will share the details of the changes that we made and the data that we collected using the E-CLASS survey and student evaluations. Rutgers, Newark is an urban public university. Our experience will be useful for those teaching in similar institutions.
      • Facilitating Instructor Change in an ISLE-Based Course
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Joshua Rutberg, Sheehan Ahmed, Diane Jammula, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Contributed
      • Teaching in an active, student-centered environment is very different from teaching in a traditional environment, requiring a different set of dispositions, knowledge and skills. This environment can be particularly challenging for new instructors with no classroom experience. During the 2019-2020 academic year, we reformed the introductory physics courses at Rutgers, Newark using the ISLE approach. The laboratory portion of this reform included eight instructors, including one ISLE expert and four graduate teaching assistants with no previous teaching experience. In this talk we will discuss the professional development conducted and the changes we observed in lab instruction that occurred during the fall semester. Specifically, we will present the observation protocols we used, our measurements of instructor improvement, and the relationship between the instructor scores and student learning and attitudes about experimental physics.
      • Periscope: Looking into learning in best-practices physics classrooms
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Rachel Scherr
      • Type: Contributed
      • Periscope is a set of lessons that connects big questions of physics teaching and learning to authentic video episodes from best-practices physics classrooms. Periscope lessons are useful if you supervise learning assistants or teaching assistants, lead faculty development, seek to improve teaching in your department, or want to improve your own teaching. Periscope’s primary aim is to help STEM instructors see authentic teaching events the way an expert educator does – to develop their “professional vision” (C. Goodwin, American Anthropologist 96(3), 1994). This development of professional vision is particularly critical for educators in transformed STEM courses, who are expected to respond to students’ ideas and interactions as they unfold moment to moment. By watching and discussing authentic teaching events, instructors enrich their experience with noticing and interpreting student behavior; practice applying lessons learned about teaching to actual teaching situations; train to listen to and watch students in their own classrooms by having them practice on video episodes of students in other classrooms; observe, discuss, and reflect on teaching situations similar to their own; develop pedagogical content knowledge; get a view of other institutions’ transformed courses; and expand their vision of their own instructional improvement. Periscope is free to educators at physport.org/periscope.
      • Co-teaching an Introductory Mechanics Course; An Opportunity to Teach or Learn?
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Azita Seyed Fadaei, Elizabeth Schoene

      • Type: Contributed
      • Classes with multiple teachers is a challenging way for teaching science. The hard part is, teachers have mostly chosen their teaching styles, and blending teaching styles after years of development can be daunting. This limits opportunities to try new approaches. However, co-teaching provides the opportunity to teach with different approaches and group work strategies, which can be a little hard but exciting. We decided to follow the same lesson plans, lab tools, quizzes and grading strategy for three introductory calculus-based mechanics classes for one quarter, including combining the classes in our Learning Management System, Canvas. We were all equally responsible as the course instructor in our in-class instruction and our online presence as well. In this experience, we improved our teaching and collaboration skills and students learned how to engage in co-taught a class with many students and multiple teachers.
      • Resonance: Peer group mentoring for first-year, undergraduate physics majors
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Laura Tucker, Kameryn Denaro

      • Type: Contributed
      • To address the challenge of involving physics majors into the department early in their career, we created a peer group mentoring program. Incoming undergraduate first-year students are assigned to a group of other incoming students and two undergraduatepeer mentors. This mentoring circle meets multiple times per quarter to discuss common student concerns and success strategies. Initial outcomes include higher GPA for program participants, a difference that is not explained by demographic factors or incoming preparation.
      • Scrutinize SA-student interaction in inquiry-oriented college physics courses
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jianlan Wang, Beth Thacker, Kyle Wipfli, Stephanie Hart

      • Type: Contributed
      • Student assistants (SA), which includes graduate and undergraduate teaching/learning assistants, are pivotal to non-traditional physics instruction in large classrooms. Despite its effectiveness, little is known about how SA-student interactions promote students’ learning. How should SAs respond to students’ questions? What support should SAs provide or refrain? What makes a SA effective or ineffective? We are particularly interested in SAs’ questioning skills. We propose a coding scheme to scrutinize SA-student interactions. For analysis, we segment a SA video into vignettes based on different situations SAs encounter and define activities like guiding questions, probing questions, and imparting information. From the pattern of activities, we code a vignette as one of the 6 levels on the hierarchy of students’ accountability. The frequency of certain levels in multiple vignettes could suggest a SA’s practical knowledge of questioning, which will be compared with SAs’ narrated knowledge measured by a written test of their questioning skills.
      • Coding Students’ Statements of Science Degree and Transfer Self-Efficacy
      • PAR-C.08
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Laura Wood, Angela Little, D'Mario Northington, Vashti Sawtelle

      • Type: Contributed
      • Self-efficacy, or confidence in one's ability to perform some task, is often used as a predictor of academic persistence, particularly in science fields with low retention and in the difficult process of transferring from a two-year college (TYC) to a four-year college (FYC). Self-efficacy has traditionally been measured quantitatively through surveys explicitly asking for confidence rankings. We describe the process of developing a codebook to qualitatively code statements of self-efficacy made in open-ended settings like interviews. To develop this codebook, we used interview and written data from two populations: (1) FYC students pursuing a science degree; and (2) TYC students planning to transfer to a university. The discussion prompts were designed to elicit discussion of these students’ self-efficacy to complete their degrees in natural science majors, to navigate academic requirements, and, when applicable, to transfer to a FYC. We will discuss the mechanics of using this codebook and intended applications.
  • PER: Student and Instructor Support & Professional Development, Program and Institutional Change II  

      • Explore your assessment data with PhysPort
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Eleanor Sayre, Sarah McKagan, Adrian Madsen

      • Type: Contributed
      • PhysPort (www.physport.org) has hundreds of free, evidence-based, and friendly resources for teaching physics. In this talk, I'll outline how PhysPort can help you choose research-based assessments (like the FCI, BEMA, or CLASS), collect data in your classes, and make sense of what your data tell you. The PhysPort Data Explorer has a beautiful, intuitive interface to help you understand how groups of students are learning, track your teaching over time, and include useful information in your annual review, promotion, and tenure documents. The Data Explorer can handle your old spreadsheets of past data, too.
      • How Faculty Take Up Ideas from a Professional Development Program
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lydia Bender, James Laverty

      • Type: Contributed
      • College faculty commonly participate in professional development to learn how to improve their teaching. Typically after the program finishes there is little support for faculty to bring new teaching practices into their classrooms. By employing the Situative Perspective and Pedagogical Reasoning and Action, we investigate how faculty take up ideas from a professional development program and the factors that influence their instructional design choices. In this study we investigate a program that aims to bring Three-Dimensional Learning (3DL) into undergraduate STEM classrooms. During this program participants are tasked with creating a teachable unit that aligns with 3DL. Using interviews, fellowship recordings, and online forum responses we look at two different faculty members, Ron and Charlie, and investigate influences that impact their design of classroom materials. Moving forward, we plan to expand the case study to more participants in order to explore how these influences effect the design of professional development programs.
      • A Refined Model for Characterizing Pedagogy in Informal Learning Environments
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Bennett, Noah Finkelstein

      • Type: Contributed
      • Compared to pedagogy in formal settings, comparatively little work has been done investigating techniques of pedagogy in informal learning environments. A 2016 study [1] addressed this issue, developing an observation-based model characterizing the pedagogical modes of volunteer instructors in an afterschool informal education program. Following the methodology of that study, we have observed and analyzed instructor pedagogy in a University of Colorado Boulder-based informal physics education program. The result is a model that both corroborates and expands upon the results of the 2016 study, more clearly accounting, e.g., for instructors’ varying objectives in the informal learning environment. We will describe study methodology and results, discuss the expanded model, and address application of the model in other informal learning environments.
      • “Guiding Star” Principles to Organize Change Efforts: The TRESTLE Network*
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stephanie Chasteen
      • Type: Contributed
      • In 2015, seven institutions joined forces to apply a common model of change, creating the Transforming Education, Stimulating Teaching and Learning Excellence (TRESTLE; http://trestlenetwork.org) network. In this talk I will discuss how we are using “principles” to evaluate the network and its impacts (see M.Q. Patton, 2017). Principles are statements which identify the core values, philosophy, or operating assumptions of an initiative, allowing a project to externalize its core values and create accountability for enacting those values. For example, one core principle of TRESTLE is “focus on the department as the main unit of change.” Identifying the core principles of TRESTLE allows us to ask questions such as “Has the network adhered to its principles?”, “How were the principles adapted?”, “Are these principles effective?”, and “How do these principles appear differently at different levels of the system?”
      • Evaluating the uptake of research-based instructional strategies in physics, math and chemistry

      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Melissa Dancy, Charles Henderson, Naneh Apkarian, Marilyne Stains, Estrella Johnson

      • Type: Contributed
      • We report results from a survey of physics, math and chemistry instructors teaching introductory courses across the United States (N=3769). The survey asked about respondents knowledge and use of various research based strategies and general pedagogical practices and included questions designed to probe for personal and environmental characteristics that might impact knowledge and use. We summarize main research findings, including relative reported use of specific strategies, comparison to historic data, and a comparison of the three disciplines. *Additional author: Jeff Raker, University of South Florida
      • Longitudinal impact of flipped and traditional introductory physics courses
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Dreyfus, Rebecca Jones, An Hoang

      • Type: Contributed
      • The first two semesters of introductory calculus-based physics at George Mason University are taught in two parallel formats: a flipped section (taught in a SCALE-UP-style active learning classroom, replacing lecture and recitation) and a traditional lecture section. To assess the influence on these formats on student performance and retention, we analyzed a data set of over 1000 students who took the traditional and/or flipped introductory courses in 2013-15, and tracked them longitudinally through their subsequent physics and engineering courses. Initial results suggest that taking flipped Physics I is associated with higher grades in later courses, and taking flipped Physics II is associated with lower grades. However, the full picture is more complicated. A greater fraction of the students who take flipped Physics II go on to take advanced courses, which suggests that flipped Physics II is associated with higher overall retention in physics and related fields.
      • Long-term impact of faculty online learning community (FOLC) participation
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alexandra Lau, Melissa Dancy

      • Type: Contributed
      • In this talk, we present results from our analysis of the long-term impacts of participating in the New Faculty Workshop-Faculty Online Learning Community (NFW-FOLC). The NFW-FOLC supports new physics and astronomy faculty as they implement research-based instructional strategies (RBISs) in their classrooms. A NFW-FOLC cohort meets regularly via videoconference over the course of one year. We have interviewed participants two years after the completion of their FOLC cohort to investigate the longitudinal impacts of FOLC participation on their current teaching practices. The main goals for NFW-FOLC participants are for them to develop as reflective practitioners and for them to successfully implement RBISs over the long term. We also hypothesize that participants may become change agents at their local institutions. We will speak to all three of these impacts in this presentation, discussing the potential of a FOLC experience to influence participants’ teaching well after the FOLC stops meeting regularly.
      • Improving education through departmental change: a comparison of approaches
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alanna Pawlak, Sarah Andrews, Dena Rezaei, Joel Corbo, Noah Finkelstein

      • Type: Contributed
      • Those seeking to change the policies, practices, and cultures of universities to support effective educational practices often find it a challenge. To navigate this work, change efforts are increasingly being focused at the department-level, including two models for departmentally-based change: the Departmental Action Team (DAT) Project and Teaching Quality Framework (TQF) Initiative. In the DAT Project, externally-facilitated working groups, comprised of students, faculty, and staff, pursue collectively-determined projects aimed at improving the undergraduate experience in their department. In the TQF Initiative, externally-facilitated working groups of faculty (modeled on the DAT Project) focus on transforming teaching evaluation practices in their department. To better understand these related models of institutional change, we conducted interviews with individuals from the DAT Project and TQF Initiative, including facilitators and grant PIs. We present results that give insight into outcomes of these models, impacts of differences between the models, and avenues for growth in the models.
      • Beyond Teaching Methods: Highlighting Physics Faculty's Strengths and Agency
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Linda Strubbe, Adrian Madsen, Sarah McKagan, Eleanor Sayre

      • Type: Contributed
      • Much work in physics education research (PER) characterizes faculty teaching practice in terms of whether faculty use specific named PER-based teaching methods, either with fidelity or with adaptation; we call this research paradigm the "teaching-method-centered paradigm." However, most faculty do not frame their teaching in terms of which particular named methods they use, but rather in terms of their own ideas and values, suggesting that the teaching-method-centered paradigm misses key features of faculty teaching. These key features include the productive ideas that faculty have about student learning and faculty agency around teaching. We offer three case studies of faculty talking about their teaching, and analyze them in terms of two theoretical frameworks: a framework of teaching principles (How Learning Works) and a framework of faculty agency (Self-Determination Theory). We show that these frameworks well characterize key features of faculty teaching practices and agency, and can be combined in a new paradigm for modeling faculty teaching which we call an "asset-based agentic paradigm." We therefore encourage physics education researchers to move beyond the teaching-method-centered paradigm and think about faculty teaching using an asset-based agentic paradigm.
      • Improving High-School Physics Lessons through Action Research
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sachiko Tosa
      • Type: Contributed
      • The use of active-learning instructional strategies in high schools is strongly emphasized in the new Course of Study in Japan. However, in the actual classroom, one-way didactic teaching is more common. This study focuses on a high-school physics teacher and examines how his beliefs and teaching change through action research. The change of his teaching from the teacher-driven way before the treatment to more student-centered way after the treatment was shown by the use of S-T graphs and co-occurrence network diagrams of the observation data. It was interesting to notice that the teacher does not recognize the change in spite of the obvious change in his teaching style. Further discussions on the effects of action research for promoting active learning in high-school physics will be included in the presentation.
      • Living Physics Portal: Designing analytics to map faculty’s evolving participation
      • PAR-F.06
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stephanie Williams, Chandra Turpen, Lyle Barbato

      • Type: Contributed
      • The Living Physics Portal* (www.livingphysicsportal.org) is a website dedicated to cultivating a community in which physics faculty teaching interdisciplinary physics courses can discuss problems of practice and share curricular content. Our research team is interested in understanding faculty’s use of the Portal. As part of this effort, we have been exploring what forms of participation can be tracked and meaningfully interpreted from users’ actions. We have developed a model that categorizes particular actions on the Portal. The model of participation includes the following categories: Networking, Interpreting, Dialoguing, Collecting, Connecting, Creating, Remixing and Viewing. In this talk, we will showcase our model of online participation and apply this model to a single user’s online activity. *This work is supported by NSF #1624478 and #1624185.
      • Influential factors on faculty experiences with long-term professional development
      • PAR-F.06
      • Wed 07/22, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Tra Huynh, Adrian Madsen, Linda Strubbe, Eleanor Sayre, Sarah McKagan

      • Type: Contributed
      • Faculty can engage in long-term professional development activities, continually learning and applying various innovations into their teaching practices. As part of a project that designs environments to support faculty professional development, we take an asset-based and agentic perspective to explore faculty experiences with on-going processes of change. We conducted longitudinal interviews with physics and astronomy faculty members from diverse backgrounds and carried out an ethnographic study regarding their long-term professional development trajectories. Our preliminary work shows that disciplinary professional development programs and on-going relationships with disciplinary colleagues are significant for faculty in making, appreciating, and sustaining changes. Additionally, faculty often pay attention to contextual constraints for structuring and creating changes.
  • PERC Bridging Session Q&A (LIVE STREAM)  

      • PERC Bridging Session Q&A (LIVE STREAM)
      • PL12
      • Wed 07/22, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)


      • Type: Plenary
      • The PERC theme this year is "Insights, Reflections, & Future Directions: Emergent Themes in the Evolving PER Community." The bridging session explores the theme. The bridging session panelists represent diverse experiences in physics education research (PER) and/or discipline-based education research (DBER). To promote meaningful discourses about the history, current status and future projections of PER. Thus, the hour-long panel will be uniquely focused on communal reflections on the role of physics education research in many contexts, looking at the past, present, and future of PER.
  • PIRA Virtual Family Physics Demonstration Extravaganza  

      • PIRA Virtual Family Physics Demonstration Extravaganza
      • PIRA-DEMO
      • Tue 07/21, 4:30PM - 5:30PM (EDT)


      • Type: Event
      • PIRA Virtual Family Physics Demonstration Extravaganza Jul 21, 2020 4:30 PM (EDT) Register in advance for this webinar: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_iOZ04nqzS8GgNJwupJ60Gg After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containinginformation about joining the webinar.
  • Per Curriculum and Instruction II  

      • Designing for Cultural Relevance in Observational Astrophysics at Texas State
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Danny Barringer, Alice Olmstead, Brianne Gutmann, Audiel Maldonado, Rose Najar

      • Type: Contributed
      • Racial and ethnic minority students rarely see themselves and their cultural backgrounds reflected in undergraduate STEM courses. In response, education research scholars have presented a broad vision for inclusive teaching in the form of culturally relevant pedagogy. However, implementing culturally relevant pedagogy in the classroom requires significant, intentional work from curriculum designers and instructors, and there is no single blueprint for designing for cultural relevance. In this talk, I will describe the collaborative development process for a new upper-division Observational Astrophysics course in the Physics Department at Texas State and the work we have done to make the course more culturally relevant to our student body. I will highlight what we have learned from students during the development and first implementation of the course.
      • Epistemological beliefs and learning: An example from resource-oriented instructional materials*

      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lauren Bauman, Amy Robertson, Lisa Goodhew

      • Type: Contributed
      • In this talk, we will investigate the relationship between context and learning using video of students engaging with resources-oriented instructional materials. Resources-oriented instructional materials aim to elicit and build from student resources for understanding physics—context-dependent “pieces of knowledge” which can be leveraged to develop sophisticated scientific understandings. We use a socio-cultural lens to explore a case in which students are frustrated as they work through the worksheet and discuss implications of our analysis for instructional design.
      • Developing scientific abilities while learning physics through the ISLE approach
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Brookes, Eugenia Etkina, Peter Bohacek, Matthew Vonk, Anna Karelina

      • Type: Contributed
      • Prior research has shown that students can develop scientific reasoning abilities by engaging in authentic scientific investigations in a course following the Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE) approach. In our current project, we set outto answer two questions: a. Can students develop scientific reasoning abilities through video-based experiments in place of experiments with physical apparatus? b. What are the affordances and constraints of each environment (video experiments versus real experiments)? To answer those, we created and implemented five video-based ISLE learning cycles (v-ISLEs) and used a quasi-experimental design in a class of 96 students. We randomly assigned 2 lab sections to the vISLE condition and another two lab sections to an apparatus condition. Both engaged in the identical experiment sequence. We will present how students developed and displayed scientific reasoning abilities in their lab reports and in exam questions that were created to specifically examine scientific reasoning.
      • Facilitating Ethics Discussions in Physics Classrooms at Texas State University
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brianne Gutmann, Egla Ochoa-Madrid, Alexander Vasquez, Daniel Barringer, Alice Olmstead

      • Type: Contributed
      • The absence of direct discussions about the intersections of science and society in classrooms reinforces the idea that physics is purely objective and removed from societal impact or influence. This messaging can justify students’ disengagement from social responsibility, leave them unprepared to use ethical reasoning in their careers, and isolate students who feel commitment to their communities. At Texas State University, we developed two units to scaffold student discussions around ethics in physics classrooms: a unit about The Manhattan Project (in Modern Physics) and a unit about the Thirty Meter Telescope (in Observational Astrophysics). This talk will discuss the motivation and development of the units, then share some emerging themes from the Manhattan Project implementation. Using video-recordings of classroom interactions, I will highlight group dynamics that limit and enhance students’ engagement, consider why these dynamics may have emerged, and discuss their implications for facilitating complex ethical reasoning among students.
      • Rediscovery of a child-centered Japanese educational approach: Hypothesis–Experiment Class
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Hull, Saiki Kitagawa, Haruki Abe, Hiroshi Yokotani, Haruhiko Funahashi

      • Type: Contributed
      • Hypothesis–Experiment Class (HEC) is the educational approach proposed by Itakura in 1963. Since that time, a number of HEC curricular materials have been developed to teach students of all ages a wide range of topics in both natural and social sciences. Although Hatano and Inagaki introduced HEC to the West in the 1980s, it was done in service of discussing findings in cognitive science, and HEC itself has received little attention outside of Japan. That is beginning to change, however, with the recent translation and publication of the book “Hypothesis-Experiment Class (Kasetsu)” in 2019. HEC has been compared with the well-known Predict-Observe-Explain (POE) approach as well as other educational approaches, but there are some salient features that make HEC unique. In this presentation, we will discuss how HEC is similar to and different from other educational approaches, looking in particular at a specific HEC lesson on background radiation.
      • Students’ attitudes during ISLE-based apparatus labs and video labs
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Anna Karelina, Eugenia Etkina, Petter Bohacek, Matthew Vonk, David Brookes

      • Type: Contributed
      • It is known that flow theory [1] can be a powerful tool investigating people's mental states during different activities. Previous research has shown that using the flow theory as a framework we can create a Likert scale survey measuring students’ mentalstate during the laboratories [2]. We used this survey to investigate students’ attitudes towards ISLE-based labs. Students answered the survey after regular ISLE-based labs, where they used real equipment, and after vISLE labs, where students worked with video recorded experiments. We analyzed students’ answers to the flow survey to observe how these different lab settings affect students’ mental states. [1] M. Csikszentmihalyi, "Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience", (Harper and Row, New York, NY, 1990). [2] A. Karelina, “Flow Theory: Students’ Mental State During Physics Labs”, AAPT Summer Meeting, Provo UT, 2019.
      • Lessons from teaching ethics using the Thirty Meter Telescope controversy
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alexander Vasquez, Brianne Gutmann, Daniel Barringer, Alice Olmstead

      • Type: Contributed
      • It is important for physics students to develop ethics knowledge, yet this is rarely taught in physics classes. We are addressing this limitation in our physics classes at Texas State University. Here, we focus on teaching about the ethics of building the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) in Hawaii for an observational astrophysics class. We developed resources for students to make informed decisions about this complex issue. The unit encompasses an introduction of the TMT, a local perspective in San Marcos, a history of Hawaii, and perspectives about the TMT relative to formal ethical frameworks. In this talk, we will present data from this new unit in Spring 2020 including students’ video-recorded classroom conversations and their written work. We will highlight what worked well in our design and what could be improved in order to support the community of physics educators and education researchers in teaching about ethics in physics classes.
      • The differences of students' scientific reasoning ability
      • PAR-D.06
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zixin Xiao
      • Type: Contributed
      • Due to different levels of education development in China, there are several college entrance examination modes. Scientific reasoning is an important part of core competence. The knowledge points of the three college entrance examination models are identical. However, the difficulty of the items in different models are different. What we are interested in is whether there are differences in scientific reasoning ability among students who have experienced three different college entrance examination modes under the same examination syllabus. We use a standardized tool developed by MIT to evaluate students' mechanical reasoning ability?Mechanics Reasoning Inventory, MRI. The samples are collected from East China Normal University, with a total number of 330. We found that the students who participated in mode 1 had the best scientific reasoning ability, and mode 2 was slightly higher than mode 3. We also found that the ability of all students to reason physical process is inferior to the ability to reason result.
  • PhysTEC: Building Institutional Support and Leadership for Teacher Preparation  

      • Attracting STEM-Talented Undergraduates to Secondary Education with Early Teaching Experiences*

      • PAR-G.08
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nicole Gugliucci, Kelly Demers

      • Type: Contributed
      • We investigated how participation in a semester-long after-school teaching experience attracts undergraduate STEM majors to consider a career in teaching. The students were asked several questions about their attitudes towards teaching in high-need districts before and after the experience through surveys and interviews. Preliminary analysis suggests that experience with teaching in this program does lead STEM majors to consider teaching as a career. However, our sample was not ideal, since students typically need to declare their second major in secondary education in their sophomore year in order to fit all of the course requirements in four years. The strong interest in teaching as a career among graduating seniors was striking and leads us to conclude that earlier intervention with a teaching experience could spark interest in teaching in time to add the secondary education major, thus ensuring that the students are well prepared upon entering the classroom.
      • Using the SPIN-UP Report and UTeach to Revitalize Teacher Education
      • PAR-G.08
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Bruce Palmquist
      • Type: Invited
      • In 2012, Central Washington University became a PhysTEC supported site. The success of our project relied on us strengthening our partnerships with other STEM departments as well as our existing science teacher education program. Along with the PhysTEC project, the physics department was in the middle of a pedagogical revitalization using the results of the SPIN-UP report (1). Curriculum revisions such as integrated lecture-lab courses, mentored inquiry projects for all majors, and a learning assistant program lifted the physics department to a position of pedagogical leadership on campus. The department worked with pedagogical experts in mathematics and other science departments to translate some of these innovations to their content and pedagogy courses. This broader collaboration attracted the attention of two deans and the provost, leading the College of the Sciences and the College of Education and Professional Studies to overhaul STEM teacher education by revising and implementing the UTeach model.
      • PhysTEC at Virginia Tech, Leadership in Action
      • PAR-G.08
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by John Simonetti
      • Type: Invited
      • The PhysTEC program at Virginia Tech utilizes an effective collaboration, and division of labor, between the Physics Department and the School of Education. In the Physics Department students receive their content knowledge, acquiring a BS or BA in Physics. And they have early teaching experiences which provide moral sustenance to the students who have decided to pursue teaching, but also help some students to realize they wish to pursue teaching. These experiences include partaking in Physics Outreach, the Physics Teaching and Learning course, and the Physics Learning Assistant Program. With their BS/BA, our majors can then obtain a Masters of Education (MAEd) degree, in the School of Education. While they pursue their MAEd, the Physics Department financially supports these students as teaching assistants in Physics. This last aspect of our program is particularly important to our recruitment and production of physics teachers.
      • Building Institutional Support: Lessons Learned from Two Physics Sites
      • PAR-G.08
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by John Stewart, Gay Stewart

      • Type: Invited
      • Successful programs build support among department colleagues and university administration. Ideally building a teacher preparation program begins with institutional commitment before the first proposal is written. University strategic plans often include sentiments like: “Enhance our ability to recruit new students of excellent quality and support their success” and “Provide students the tools for success in the job markets of the future.” Showing your efforts are aligned with administrative priorities is necessary to ensuring institutional support. Department support is also easier to gain and maintain when teacher preparation is cast in terms of departmental priorities such as an improved undergraduate program and significant positive attention from administration. Related efforts around launching two PhysTEC programs will be discussed.
  • Physics Education Research II  

      • Measuring Student Mindset Shifts in an Introductory Physics Classroom
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Debbie Andres
      • Type: Poster
      • As teachers we are expected to incorporate various new types of instruction into our classrooms to keep up with changing standards. With each new instructional practice, we assess our students based on content and skills, but can we measure their beliefson their ability to learn and their development of confidence? Students will step into a physics classroom with a predetermined mindset regarding their ability to learn physics or even more generally science. In my ninth grade physics classes I integrate elements of Standards Based Grading and the Investigative Science Learning Environment approach to develop physics content and science practices. I use a variety of attitudes and beliefs surveys throughout the year to track shifts in students’ mindsets. Students are more actively involved in their self-reflection process. In this poster I share how my students’ mindsets regarding their learning of physics have changed.
      • Biases, Limitations, and Focus: Student Perspectives on Subjectivity in Physics*
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Randeep Basara, Andrea Wooley, Leander Villarta, Abigail Daane

      • Type: Poster
      • Descriptions of the nature of science contrast the view of physics as objective, unaffected by human influence. In order to better understand students’ thinking about the nature of physics, we collected responses to the question, “Do you think physics isobjective or subjective?” In this presentation, we compare and contrast the ideas from “Science for All Americans” to students’ ideas about the presence of subjectivity in physics. Students, prior to engaging in conversation about subjectivity, tend to describe physics without reference to human influence. After discussing this question with peers, students acknowledge the individual limitations of human perception and focus in research. We argue that an awareness about the influence of structural and individual subjectivity in classrooms can create a robust scientific community and disrupt the current culture that serves to marginalize groups of people.
      • Understanding Motivational Characteristics of Students Who Repeat Algebra-Based Introductory Physics Courses

      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sonja Cwik, Yasemin Kalender, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Poster
      • In introductory algebra-based physics courses at the University of Pittsburgh, the majority of students are on pre-health professional track who aspire to become future health professionals. Two introductory physics courses are mandatory for students with these types of ambitions and many students who do not perform to their satisfaction the first time repeat these physics courses. We present an investigation in which we compared the motivational characteristics of male and female students who repeated an introductory algebra-based physics course across different racial and ethnic minority groups. These findings can be beneficial in providing appropriate advising and support to help all students excel in algebra-based physics courses.
      • Experimental Science Affect and Measurement Uncertainty
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul DeStefano
      • Type: Poster
      • Physics education research (PER) has produced a large body of work from which a standard of best practices for the introductory laboratory were synthesized in the AAPT Recommendations for the Undergraduate Physics Laboratory Curriculum (2014). These guidelines emphasize teaching students to “think like a physicist”. But, many introductory labs remain procedure driven and focused on data-taking. Even when they are not, students tend to believe the goal of labs is to get the “right” data from the instruments. We argue one unifying feature of the recommendations is the teaching of authentic practice and, therefore, successful lab instruction should be reflected in improved student attitudes of self-efficacy and science affect. We propose a project-based, student-centered, design-oriented learning module for first year introductory undergraduate physics labs in mechanics that emphasises experimental measurement uncertainty and is based on previously researched reforms in PER.
      • Mapping the informal physics efforts in the state of Michigan
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dena Izadi, Julia Willison, Kathleen Hinko

      • Type: Poster
      • We are conducting study to map the landscape of informal physics efforts using a framework we have developed based on Organizational Theory. To achieve our goals we have designed a methodology based on this framework that collects surveys and interviewswith informal physics program facilitators across different states. To test our methodology, we implemented our data collection protocol across the entire state of Michigan, as a microcosm of other states in the US. Here we present data analysis for all the respondents from Michigan to create a comprehensive taxonomy of informal physics activities in our data set. In building a taxonomy, we considered different approaches for comprehensive and representative data collection.
      • Understanding Self-Efficacy and Performance of Students Who Repeat Calculus-Based Introductory Physics Courses

      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yangqiuting Li, Zeynep Kalender, Christian Schunn, Timothy Nokes-Malach, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Poster
      • College level introductory physics courses for physical science and engineering majors are often perceived as weed- out courses. These large calculus-based introductory physics courses, which are taken mainly by first-year college students at the University of Pittsburgh, act as gatekeepers for many students who want to pursue careers in physical science and engineering. Due to the societal stereotypes and biases about who belongs in physics and who has what it takes to do well in physics, many underrepresented students in these courses, e.g., women and racial and ethnic minority students, often experience stereotype threat that can cause them to perform worse than they otherwise would. Moreover, students who repeat introductory level physics courses in college due to various reasons can experience even higher level of anxiety. We conducted an investigation in which we compared the self-efficacy and performance of male and female students and students across different racial and ethnic minority groups who repeated the first calculus-based introductory physics course. These findings can be helpful in contemplating strategies to develop equitable and inclusive learning environments in these pivotal courses to help all students learn physics.
      • Examining and Supporting Student Construction of Alternative Lines of Reasoning*
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mikayla Mays, MacKenzie Stetzer, Beth Lindsey

      • Type: Poster
      • Research in physics education has shown that poor student performance on certain physics tasks may stem primarily from domain-general reasoning phenomena rather than a lack of conceptual understanding. The observed reasoning patterns are consistent with dual-process theories of reasoning (DPToR). Efforts are ongoing to design intervention strategies that can guide the development of research-based curriculum to help students strengthen their reasoning skills and support cognitive reflection. In one new intervention, students are asked to set aside (at least temporarily) their own reasoning and engage in alternative lines of reasoning. Students first respond to a qualitative physics task, then construct reasoning chains that could have been used to reach the answers given by fictitious students, and finally revisit the original physics task. In this talk, we will discuss the preliminary results, how they relate to DPToR, and the implications of our findings for future curriculum development.
      • Understanding LA sensemaking: Are they discussions about Physics or Teaching?
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Austin McCauley, Marshall Adkins, Eleanor Close, Steven Wolf

      • Type: Poster
      • The physics department at Texas State University has implemented a Learning Assistant (LA) program with research-based curricula (Tutorials in Introductory Physics) in introductory course sequences. We have been reviewing video data of LA prep sessions taken over the past three years in order to characterize LA discussions. As emerging physicists and physics teachers, LAs naturally engage in discussion in these groups that spans many topics directly relevant to the activity being prepared. Initially we attempted to code separately for discussions of physics content and discussions of student struggles relevant to teaching the physics content. However, we have concluded that these categories are not meaningfully distinct. We sought to understand the sensemaking LAs went through and the effect this had on group discussions. We noticed LAs tended to frame their questions as though they were potential inquiries from students or how to approach teaching the concept in class.
      • Characteristics of Institutions with Learning Assistant Programs: An Equity Investigation*
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alexa McQuade, Jayson Nissen, Manher Jariwala

      • Type: Poster
      • Learning assistant (LA) programs support instructors transforming their courses to use evidence-based instructional strategies. We investigated the types of schools that have LA programs to better understand how the distribution of those programs supports excellent and inclusive education across institutions. We used the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education (CCIHE) public database to compare schools with and without LA programs, looking at a variety of institutional characteristics to determine whether the distribution of LA programs is equitable across different types of institutions. We will discuss the implications of our findings and identify areas for future research using critical quantitative perspectives in physics education research.
      • STEM Student Integration and Identity through Discipline-based Outreach Activities
      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Callie Rethman, Tatiana Erukhimova, Jonathan Perry

      • Type: Poster
      • Beyond the formal curriculum of a physics degree, students in the field may choose to enhance their education through participation in informal experiences such as physics outreach. While participation in outreach gives students opportunities to engage with the public and communicate physics, the role of these experiences in establishing a student’s identity within physics is not well understood. For the initial iteration of this study, current and former participants from outreach programs at Texas A&M University were surveyed. Results indicate a positive association between participation in physics outreach events and a student’s sense of belonging within the STEM community. There are also indications of to the development of communication and teamwork skills from respondents. Interviews are currently being conducted with more in depth questions in order to get a deeper look at students’ experience with outreach. With the combined results of the survey and interviews, we aim to contribute to a more complete understanding of the role of outreach in establishing a participant’s identity within the field of physics.
      • How Do Introductory Physics and Mathematics Courses Predict Engineering Students' Performance in Subsequent Engineering Courses?

      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kyle Whitcomb, Yasemin Kalender, Timothy Nokes-Malach, Christian Schunn, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Poster
      • Physics courses as well as chemistry and mathematics courses are considered foundational in engineering curricula and all engineering undergraduates must successfully complete courses in these subjects. However, relatively little is known about the predictive relationships between physics coursework and later engineering courses. This study uses large-scale institutional data to investigate the relationships between grades earned in foundational courses and early engineering courses in two large-population majors in order to gain insight into which foundational courses are most predictive of later performance and whether the relationship follows a linear or threshold function. Multiple regression analyses were performed on course grades using 10 years of data on 5,348 engineering students to construct a predictive model. We find that the predictive relationship between early and later performance is generally linear rather than threshold and that the strongest predictors are advanced mathematics courses along with cumulative STEM GPA, which is in turn strongly predicted by high school GPA and entry test scores. Physics and introductory engineering programming and modeling courses from the first year also predict performance in later courses. In addition, advanced mathematics courses are critical to the long-term success of engineering students in these two common majors.
      • Inconsistent Gender Differences in Self-Efficacy and Performance for Engineering Majors in Physics and Other Disciplines: A Cause for Alarm?

      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kyle Whitcomb, Yasemin Kalender, Timothy Nokes-Malach, Christian Schunn, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Poster
      • Prior research has shown that self-efficacy can be a critical factor in student learning and performance in different STEM disciplines. Moreover, although past research has documented self-efficacy differences between female and male students in some STEM disciplines, there has not been research comparing these relations across disciplines. In order to better understand these relations and how self-efficacy and academic performance are related, we analyzed undergraduate engineering students' physics, mathematics, engineering, and chemistry grades using large-scale institutional data and their self-reported self-efficacy using a validated survey in each of these disciplines to examine gender differences in engineering students' self-efficacy and course grades. We find discipline-dependent trends in the relationship between self-efficacy and course grades, including a self-efficacy gender gap in physics which does not close by the fourth year in engineering along with a gender gap in physics course grade that favors men despite women engineering majors outperforming men in every other discipline. The troubling trends reported here should be addressed in order to make STEM learning equitable and inclusive.
      • Encouraging collaborative partnerships: An extended professional development process for Learning Assistants and Faculty

      • PS-A.05
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jamia Whitehorn, Ember Smith, Mel Sabella, Andrea Van Duzor

      • Type: Poster
      • The Learning Assistant (LA) Model involves undergraduate students as peer support in STEM classrooms. During weekly preparation sessions, faculty meet with their LAs and have the opportunity to discuss content, think about student understanding, develop instructional materials, and develop collaborative partnerships where LAs can be authentic members of an instructional team. The development of these partnerships can take time. In this poster we talk about fostering partnerships between LAs and faculty to support curriculum transformation through extended professional development, occurring over multiple semesters. Our process provides structure for an LA-faculty team to conduct and gather data through preliminary tools such as forms that guide reflection on course activities and in-class focus groups that provide direct student feedback. This extended professional development process also provides support for LA-faculty partnerships, leveraging LA expertise and supporting instructional innovation.
  • Physics Education Research IV  

      • 3 Dimensional Learning in Student Work: Developing and Using Models
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Bergeron
      • Type: Poster
      • The Next Generation Science Standards has laid out a vision for science instruction that mirrors the three dimensions of expert knowledge organization: Scientific Practices, Disciplinary Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts. While originally devised forthe K-12 classroom, increasing effort has been made to bring this philosophy to the college level. As part of our STEM gateway transformation project at Michigan State University, we've developed protocols to characterize the 3 Dimensionality of both assessment items and teaching practices. This work shifts the focus from instructor teaching to student engagement. This poster will present initial results for specifically characterizing student engagement in the Scientific Practice of Developing and Using Models.
      • The impact of IPLS in a senior biology capstone course
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Geller, Jack Rubien, Sara Hiebert Burch, Catherine Crouch

      • Type: Poster
      • In this second of two paired posters exploring the longitudinal outcomes of Introductory Physics for Life Science (IPLS) on student learning, we examine whether differences in student work on a diffusion task given in the senior biology capstone course can be correlated with prior enrollment in IPLS, and how those differences reflect competencies developed in the IPLS curriculum. More specifically, we assess whether IPLS students are more likely to reason quantitatively about diffusive phenomena and to successfully coordinate between multiple representations of diffusive processes. We also use survey data to describe the attitudes toward physics of IPLS and non-IPLS students in the senior capstone, and position these findings within the broader context of our longitudinal study of the impact of IPLS on student work in later biology and chemistry environments.
      • MAGNA: MAgnetic General kNowledge Assessment
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Colleen Megowan Romanowicz, Rebecca Vieyra, Johnson-Glenberg Mina, Lopez Ramon, Chrystian Vieyra Cortes

      • Type: Poster
      • Learn about a new instrument intended to measure learners' conceptualizations of static magnetic fields, including strength and orientation, especially as they pertain to Earth's background magnetic field. The MAgnetic General kNowledge Assessment (MAGNA) was developed to measure the impact of a 3-D mobile visualization tool, MAGNA-AR, created through an NSF-funded technology development and education research project. This poster will include information about how to access and review the assessment, an opportunity to use the MAGNA-AR app, and a suggested protocol for how to help learners effectively explore fields.
      • Graduate programs in physics education research: A USA based survey
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mirna Mohamed, Ramón Barthelemy, Alexis Knaub

      • Type: Poster
      • This article outlines the results of a survey seeking to understand Physics Education Research (PER) Ph.D. programs in the USA. The survey explored research group composition, the number of graduates, courses taken and more. The survey was sent to a listof PER research group leaders created by crowdsourcing from the PER community. Of the 46 PER Ph.D. programs identified and invited to the survey, 25 usable responses were received. The majority of programs were in departments of physics with fewer in schools of education or institutes of science education. Most programs required graduate physics course work, with fewer requiring research methodology courses. Only five required a course in PER. The career trajectories of students were diverse, with the majority going into academic careers. However, a robust minority pursued careers in the private sector. It is important to understand the training and support of new Ph.D.s in PER in order to train the next generation of our community leaders and sustain the field as a whole.
      • Applying Social Network Analysis to an Online Community of Practice for Teachers
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Michael Nadeau, Bahar Modir, Robynne Lock, William Newton

      • Type: Poster
      • We take a social network analysis approach to investigate how members of an online teacher community interact with each other through a nine-week classical mechanics summer course. The class, associated with the Master program in physics with teaching emphasis at Texas A&M University-Commerce, requires students to participate in weekly problem solving and biweekly reading reflection discussion boards. We measured the weekly activity level for the community and number of interactions between students, and compared these to the average values determined for the entire semester. We found that the participation of students in problem solving discussions fluctuates from week to week; revealing the activity of the community of practice, influence of student backgrounds, and possible structural features of the course. Comparatively, the reading reflection participation did not show a noticeable variation. In order to gain more insight into our findings we characterized the types of interactions by categorizing student communication.
      • Comparing Attitudes of Students and Faculty About Inclusive Teaching Practices
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dan Oleynik, Jacquelyn Chini Chini, Erin Scanlon

      • Type: Poster
      • People inherently vary in terms of their needs, abilities, and interests. Previous research indicates that physics instructors hold negative views about people with disabilities, complicity engage in practices of ableism, and do not receive training about teaching or implementing inclusive teaching practices. However, we can support learner variability by employing inclusive teaching practices (i.e., teaching practices that support learner variation, possibly reducing though not eliminating the need for individual accommodations). Using a modified version of the Inclusive Teaching Strategies Inventory (ITSI), we surveyed 140 students and instructors from 10 APS meetings about their beliefs about and use of inclusive teaching strategies. Students and instructors both exist within the same postsecondary environment, while playing different roles. Thus, there may be similarities as well as differences in their beliefs. We will present a comparison of students’ and instructors’ beliefs regarding inclusive teaching practices.
      • Secondary Student Perspectives of Quantum Physics
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zac Patterson, Lin Ding

      • Type: Poster
      • Secondary physics curricula predominantly focus on physics content established prior to the 20th century (e.g., Newtonian mechanics, conservation of energy). Rarely are students exposed to modern physics topics (e.g., quantum mechanics, special relativity) in their formal education. Even so, students inevitably encounter terms such as “quantum” and “quantum physics” in their everyday lives. The aim of this study is to provide insight on secondary student perspectives of the terms “quantum” and “quantum physics”. While there is a body of research available that analyzes university physics majors’ perspectives of quantum physics topics, little research has been done at the secondary level. Clinical interviews of students at a Midwestern high school are conducted to establish commonalities among perspective of quantum physics topics.
      • Exploring the Durability of Student Attitudes Toward Interdisciplinarity
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gwendolyn Rak, Benjamin Geller, Catherine Crouch

      • Type: Poster
      • Building on prior analyses of how introductory physics experiences affect student attitudes, preliminary evidence suggests that IPLS students, more so than their counterparts in traditional introductory physics courses, express the attitude that physics is relevant to their primary biological interests. We report on the durability of these attitudes. We present results from interdisciplinary attitude surveys given to students a year (or more) after their initial experience in IPLS, as well as immediately after that experience. By tracking the evolution of student attitudes over time, we assess whether attitude improvements due to IPLS are in fact stable and long-lasting. We also explore how students’ subsequent coursework in biology or other disciplines may influence these attitudes.
      • SUPER Recruitment and Retention Program
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Peter Sheldon, Sarah Sojka

      • Type: Poster
      • Step Up to Physical Science and Engineering at Randolph College (SUPER) was established as a four-year recruiting and retention program in 2013 with NSF S-STEM funding. The intention is to educate the nation’s next scientists. SUPER includes a summer transition program, mentoring, study halls,a living-learning community, a four-year career plan, a common first year seminar, and research and internship experiences. The NSF funding supports need-based merit scholarships for approximately half of the students in the program. This paper examines the impact of these programs as a whole on recruitment to the College and retention to graduation with a STEM degree across a range of demographic characteristics. The goal is to determine the overall impact of a comprehensive program of student support and engagement, and as much as possible, determine how individual components of the program contribute to this impact.
      • Does IPLS help students apply physics to biology?
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Maya Tipton, Benjamin Geller, Catherine Crouch

      • Type: Poster
      • Although we have found that students in our Introductory Physics for Life Science (IPLS) course describe physics as more relevant to their primary interests than do their counterparts in a traditional introductory physics environment, we do not yet know whether IPLS courses better prepare life science students to use physical reasoning in contexts that extend beyond those explicitly encountered in IPLS. To answer this question of whether IPLS better prepared our students for future learning, we designed and administered a task related to fluid dynamics at the conclusion of both traditional and IPLS introductory physics courses. We describe the construction of the task and the ways in which IPLS students approached the task differently than did students in the traditional course. We interpret the results in light of the goal of the IPLS course, supporting transfer within the preparation for future learning paradigm around which our course is designed.
      • "Thinking Like a Physicist" in the Middle-grades: Promising Results from 7th-grade Students Studying Magnetism

      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Tamara Young, Lauren Barth-Cohen, Sarah Braden, Sara Gailey

      • Type: Poster
      • Significant research at the undergraduate level has been devoted to examining how students learn scientific reasoning skills, or how to “think like a physicist.” Comparably, few studies in PER have focused on similar reasoning skills at the middle schoollevel. We implemented a reform-based physics unit at the 7th grade level that is focused on supporting students in developing and refining scientific models for magnetism. Through a multiple-case study approach, we analyzed students drawn models along with video of class discussion. Results show how 7th grade students use evidence to make arguments for and defend models of magnetism in a manner that is consistent with ways that professional physicists reason with scientific models. This is significant in light of the growing recognition of the need to support middle school students in developing scientific practices that are consistent with “thinking like a physicist.”
      • Diagnosing Middle-School Students’ Cognition in Argumentation Practices
      • PS-A.07
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Xiaoming Zhai, Kevin Haudek, Chris Wilson, Tina Cheuk, Jonathan Osborne

      • Type: Poster
      • This study applies a cognitive diagnostic modeling approach to examine student performance on argumentation. We abstract five types of attributes which are deemed critical to successful argumentation practice: making claims, providing evidence, reasoning, justification, and deploying scientific ideas. We coded for these five attributes across 19 constructed response items for argumentation. We automatically scored responses from 932 middle school students using machine learning algorithms. We first applied many-facet Rasch analysis to classify students into different levels according to an existing learning progression of argumentation. We then examined patterns of students’ mastery patterns of the five attributes within each level. Preliminary findings suggest that 36 major mastery patterns exist within the three-level learning progression. We find that the attributes of justification and reasoning are critical and challenging cognitive skills for students at lower levels of the learning progression. Some Level 3 students experience challenges using reasoning.
  • Physics Education Research IX  

      • Report and Rerun: Closing the Loops in Education
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Mohamed Abdelhafez, David Pritchard

      • Type: Poster
      • We’re developing a web-based utility to give instructors next morning formative reports on last night’s assignments, including the time and difficulty on questions and videos/readings to guide today’s instruction. Together with additional metadata, thisinformation can guide revising the course for rerunning next year. Data are presented using color codes for quickly assessing how well students are doing on individual resources and on the entire assignment. This quickly identifies resources to eliminate or move elsewhere. We use “edx2bigquery” to convert edX log data into Google BigQuery which generates the dynamic reports. It also provides an easy way of adding static metadata via a popup in a modified version of open edX or directly into the resource database. These uses illustrate the desirability of “closing the loop” in education, a powerful way to improve instruction and content. The audience can suggest what information they desire - or to mohamedr@mit.edu
      • Affordances and Constraints of Real Experiments vs Video
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Brookes, Eugenia Etkina, Peter Bohacek, Matthew Vonk, Anna Karelina

      • Type: Poster
      • This poster describes a project in which students in an algebra-based course who learned physics through the Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE) approach designed and conducted experiments in labs either using real apparatus or analyzing arrays of videos pre-prepared for them. The students were assigned randomly to those two conditions. They wrote lab reports, which we analyzed using scientific abilities rubrics (Etkina et al., 2006). We present the analysis of those reports and use it to discuss the affordances of these two different ways to design experiments, collect and analyze data, test hypotheses and communicate.
      • Understanding Rural
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Elaine Christman, John Stewart

      • Type: Poster
      • Not all high schools prepare students equally well for university physics coursework and identifying students who may benefit from additional support can improve equity and access to STEM. While substantial research has investigated different outcomes for women in physics, substantially less work has investigated other students in the minority in physics classes such are underrepresented minority students, first-generation students, and rural students. This study investigates characteristics of rural schools that correlate with election of and persistence in STEM majors as well as successful completion of a calculus-based introductory physics course sequence at a large state land-grant university. Factors examined include Advanced Placement and online concurrent college course offerings, school size, and community demographic data.
      • Changes (or not) in Perceptions in a Revised Lab
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Helen Cothrel, Gregory Hassold, Ronald Tackett

      • Type: Poster
      • We revised our electricity and magnetism (physics 2) lab with a goal of facilitating a more authentic lab experience. Significant changes to the course included doing mostly two-week labs instead of one-week labs, students setting up their own equipment,and use of lab time for report writing including a “writing workshop” early in the term. We collected six terms of E-CLASS data to examine students’ beliefs about experimenting before and after changes to the course; data include three terms of the original course and three terms of the revised course. This poster will include survey results and will compare and contrast data from both versions of the course. The poster and an associated contributed talk are available in a shared presentation folder at bit.ly/HelenAAPT (case sensitive).
      • It’s just rolling up—How students make industrial rolled-up capacitors
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lin Ding, Ping Zhang

      • Type: Poster
      • Capacitance is a challenging concept in introductory physics. Learners often struggle with the functions and working mechanisms of capacitors. In this study, we investigated how high-school students followed textbook descriptions to create industrial rolled-up capacitors. In principle, rolled-up capacitors are an extension of the 3-layer parallel-plate structure with a necessary, additional layer of dielectrics (aluminum-dielectrics-aluminum-dielectrics) to prevent short circuit and increase capacitance. Although nontrivial, the rationale and resultant outcome of the 4-layer structure is almost never discussed in textbooks. We tasked 37 students in an introductory physics class with an assignment to create and analyze rolled-up capacitors by following textbook descriptions. Findings show that the participants used the textbook descriptions merely as a cookbook recipe. They rolled up a 3-layer parallel-plate capacitor and failed to understand the mechanisms of the different layers in the rolled-up structure.
      • Patterns in students’ self-directed use of the digital learning environment Algodoo
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Elias Euler, Christopher Prytz, Bor Gregorcic

      • Type: Poster
      • In this poster, we present three types of activity that can be expected during students’ self-directed use of a specific physics software, Algodoo, and reflect on how each activity type can be productive for the teaching and learning of physics. Unlike many commonly-used physics simulations and visualizations, Algodoo is a digital learning environment that allows students to explore a range of physics phenomena within the same software. We describe the features of the activity types, which we coded from video recordings of students as they used the software, and discuss how each of the three activity types can be seen as productive for physics education. In doing so, we provide recommendations for how physics teachers can springboard from students’ engagement in each activity type into a range of possible physics-relevant discussions.
      • Direct observation of student behavior in online learning modules
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Matthew Guthrie, Zachary Felker, Tom Zhang, Zhongzhou Chen

      • Type: Poster
      • Interpretation of student behavior in online learning platforms based on clickstream data is complicated by not being able to directly observe the learner. This leads to difficulties in understanding inherently unobservable effects on the students’ clickstream data. For example, we try to calculate the amount of time that each student spent studying the instructional material in each module, which requires estimating certain properties of the resulting data. Consequently, the major issue we address in this work is the difficulty of making reasonable cutoffs for abnormally short and abnormally long events. Students enrolled in introductory mechanics courses participated in a study where they completed online homework modules in a controlled, observed environment. In this talk, we will present comparisons between students’ clickstream data for those who were observed and those who were not observed, and for the same student in proctored and non-proctored sessions on different modules.
      • The NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP)
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Luisa Rebull
      • Type: Poster
      • NITARP, the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program, gets teachers involved in authentic astronomical research. We partner small groups of educators with a professional astronomer mentor for a year-long original research project. The teams experience the entire research process, from writing a proposal, to doing the research, to presenting the results at an American Astronomical Society (AAS) meeting. The program runs from January through January. Applications are available annually in May and are due in September. The educators’ experiences color their teaching for years to come, influencing hundreds of students per teacher. This poster will provide a description of the program, which has been running in this form since 2008.
      • n Analysis of 8 Years of Data on the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP)
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Luisa Rebull
      • Type: Poster
      • The NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP) partners small groups of educators with a research astronomer for a year-long authentic research project. This program aligns well with the characteristics of high-quality professional development programs and has worked with a total of 123 educators since 2005. In this poster, we explore surveys obtained from 74 different educators, at up to four waypoints during the course of 13 months, incorporating data from the class of 2010 through the class of 2017. The reasons educators participate are mapped onto a continuum ranging from more inward-focused to more outward-focused. At least 12% of participating educators have changed career paths substantially in part due to the program, and 11% report that the experience was “life changing.” At least 60% are including richer, more authentic science activities in their classrooms. This work illuminates what benefits the program brings to its participants.
      • Can We Teach Critical Thinking in an Introductory Lab Setting?
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Stiliana Savin, David Weiman, Alisa Rod

      • Type: Poster
      • Here we present results from three different assessments carried out at Barnard College. In the first, we evaluated lab reports as a part of an internal study funded by the provost’s office and in collaboration with Barnard’s Empirical Reasoning Center. We evaluated features like data, graph accuracy, and others, in two rounds of assessment – before and after an Excel workshop, and before and after a workshop on Experimental Uncertainty. The second assessment was done through participation in the PLIC survey. The survey presents two case studies and asks questions about models, methods, and follow-up suggestions. The third assessment was a brief one-question survey, testing understanding of experimental uncertainty, filled out during lab, pre/post instruction. The three assessments differ both in their method of evaluation and in the critical thinking skills they evaluate. We will show that the results are promising – indeed, we can teach critical thinking in the physics lab.
      • Development of high school students’ understandings of Nature of Science
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Matthias Ungermann, Spatz Verena

      • Type: Poster
      • In a society characterised by STEM sciences the knowledge about Nature of Science (NOS) is deemed an important part of students’ education (Höttecke, 2008; Kircher et al., 2015; OECD, 2016). Furthermore, epistemological beliefs are found to influence learning processes and learning outcomes (Hofer and Pintrich, 2016). So one can say, this seems to be a key competence for successful orientation and understanding in the STEM subjects (Köller et al, 2000). Although there are a couple of studies about students’ beliefs about NOS available in some states in Germany (representing: Kremer, 2010; Ertl, 2013), due to the differing school curricula in each state generalisations are to be avoided. Therefore, we have conducted a study which explores the development of lower high school students’ conceptions of NOS during one school year in the state of Hesse (N=101). On the poster we will present an overview of our results.
      • Using Worked-Out Examples of Different Features to Increase Learner’s Problem Solving
      • PS-B.09
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ping Zhang, Lin Ding

      • Type: Poster
      • It is well documented that studying worked-out examples can effectively increase learners’ performance on solving isomorphic target problems. However, the extent to which the proximity of the example-target resemblance can affect problem solving remains unclear. To begin addressing this question, we developed several pairs of example-target problems that varied in three different types of contextual features, namely representation (involving, for example, different words, symbols, diagrams and pictures), models (requiring different approximations, idealizations, and simplifications of a phenomenon), and structures (invoking different auxiliary concepts or different ways of invoking concepts). We tested these example-target pairs of different resemblance features with a cohort of 122 university students enrolled in a calculus-based electricity and magnetism course. It was found that a change in any of the aforementioned contextual features posed as a barrier for students to recognize the connection between the example and the target, therefore reducing the effectiveness of the worked-out examples.
  • Physics Education Research VI  

      • Assessment of Knowledge Integration in Learning Physics*
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lei Bao, Joseph Fritchman, Kathleen Koenig

      • Type: Poster
      • Student development of deep understanding of core scientific ideas and cross-cutting concepts in STEM disciplines is the focus of current framework for science education. Research has shown that deep learning can be achieved through knowledge integrationwhere fragmented connections between and within concepts are strengthened through experience within differing contexts. However, few studies point towards specific methods for assessing and supporting knowledge integration in the classroom. This presentation will introduce Conceptual Framework, which has been shown to be promising as an operational approach for modeling assessment and instruction that target knowledge integration. A conceptual framework maps the possible knowledge structures of novice and expert students and help identify missing connections between conceptual core ideas and other elements within the knowledge structure. Examples and current studies using the conceptual framework approach will be discussed.
      • Evaluating context-oriented teaching materials for electricity lessons
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Liza Dopatka, Verena Spatz

      • Type: Poster
      • In the past decades, physics education research has repeatedly shown that German students’ interest in physics is often low. This is particularly worrying as students’ interest is an important factor for the learning process. Therefore, a lot of projectshave focused on promoting students´ interest in physics classrooms. Our approach is to design und evaluate context-oriented teaching material. There are some well-established research scales available to assess students’ interest in physics that - so far - have largely been used unrelated to each other. Against this background we have decided to integrate two of these common constructs in a questionnaire for our current study to assess high school students’ interest in context-oriented physics lessons about electricity (N = 1629). On the poster we will present our ideas for the design of context-oriented teaching material in electricity and the newly structured interest scales.
      • Multidimensional Item Response Theory and the BEMA
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by John Hansen, John Stewart

      • Type: Poster
      • The Brief Electricity and Magnetism Assessment (BEMA) is a 31-question assessment designed to assess student understanding of basic principles of electricity and magnetism in an introductory, calculus-based physics course. This study develops a model of student knowledge measured by the BEMA. This is guided by a theoretical model of expert understanding of electricity and magnetism. Multidimensional Item Response Theory (MIRT) was used to investigate a large post-test dataset (N=9666) from a large, western public research university collected over the span of 15 years. An optimal model was found by exploring variations to the theoretical expert model and selecting the model with the optimal MIRT fit parameters.
      • Using Group Exams to Address Persistent Intuitively Appealing but Incorrect Student Reasoning*

      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Alistair McInerny, Mila Kryjevskaia

      • Type: Poster
      • Many students tend to provide intuitively appealing (but incorrect) responses to some physics questions despite demonstrating (on similar questions) the formal knowledge necessary to reason correctly. While these inconsistencies are typically persistent even in active learning environments, we believe that adding a group component to the exam may engage students sufficiently to resolve these instances of inconsistent reasoning. In our study, students were given opportunities to revisit their answers to questions known to elicit strong intuitively appealing (but incorrect) responses in a collaborative group component of an exam immediately following a traditional individual component. Students discussed their responses with group members but were required to submit their own answers and reasoning. On this poster, we examine the effectiveness of a collaborative group exam approach in addressing and resolving inconsistencies in student reasoning and will compare the effectiveness of this approach to a more traditional peer instruction technique.
      • Using Machine Learning to Understand Changes in CLASS Scores
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Miller, Elaine Christman, John Stewart

      • Type: Poster
      • Nearly ten years ago, we began to collect pre- and post-instruction data about content and attitudes from every student enrolled in both semesters of calculus-based introductory physics. While the content results from the FMCE and CSEM instruments have been explored in several ways by the WVU PER group, the attitudes data using the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey (CLASS) have gone relatively unexplored. In this poster, I will present the results of an exploration of this large (N > 3000) data set from a large eastern land- grant university serving approximately 30,000 students. We first summarize the data set in the traditional way, as a shift from pre to post in favorable vs. unfavorable or expert-like vs. novice answers. We, then, examine and report to what degree other variables in our data set can predict this shift among the population using machine learning algorithms.
      • Extending Modified Module Analysis to Include Correct Conceptual Physics Responses
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by John Stewart, James Wells, Rachel Henderson

      • Type: Poster
      • Brewe, Bruun, and Bearden first applied network analysis to understand patterns of incorrect conceptual physics reasoning in multiple-choice instruments introducing the Module Analysis for Multiple-Choice Responses (MAMCR) algorithm. Wells et al. proposed an extension to the algorithm which allowed the analysis of large datasets called Modified Module Analysis (MMA). This method analyzed the network structure of the correlation matrix of the responses to a multiple-choice instrument. Both MAMCR and MMA could only be applied to networks of incorrect responses. This poster presents an extension of MMA which allows the analysis of networks involving both correct and incorrect responses. The new algorithm was applied to the FCI and recovered much of the structure identified by MMA, identified sets of correct answers requiring similar physical reasoning, and identified some groups of responses which mixed correct and incorrect responses.
      • Role analysis of student networks in active learning physics classes
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Adrienne Traxler, Tyme Suda, Eric Brewe, Kelley Commeford

      • Type: Poster
      • The Characterizing Active Learning Environments in Physics (CALEP) project combines classroom observations with network analysis to identify distinctive features of research-based physics curricula. This poster compares the social positions available in student networks from four classes, looking for major similarities or differences across learning environments. Role analysis looks for common structural patterns in a network. It groups people who have a similar pattern of connections, whether or not they know each other. We find that coherent subgroups are the most common structure in the late-semester networks of the sections analyzed. This differs from many networks in sociology studies, where other patterns such as hierarchy are more common. Comparing these courses, the social positions are more alike to each other than different. A wider sampling of data would be needed to claim that this is a "typical" active learning network signature, and would also provide a baseline for studying network-building interventions.
      • A Critical Examination of DFW Rates in LA Supported Physics Courses
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ben Van Dusen, Jayson Nissen

      • Type: Poster
      • The American Physical Society calls for improving the diversity of physics by supporting an inclusive culture that encourages women and people of color to become physicists. Evidence shows that a major barrier to pursuing a career in physics or any otherSTEM discipline is passing the introductory physics course. We investigated the intersectional nature of racism, sexism, and classism in inequities in student rates of earning a non-passing grade (d, f, or withdrawal; DFW) using a quantitative critical framework. The analyses examined DFW rates for students in LA and non-LA supported physics courses at a Hispanic Serving Institution. Results identified large differences across intersecting identities. Controlling for instructors, LAs were found to be associated with decreases in DFW rates across all demographic groups.
      • A Metric for Comparing Populations Using Item Response Curves
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Walter, Ed Nuhfer, Crisel Suarez

      • Type: Poster
      • We introduce a valuable metric for comparing any two populations on a multiple-choice test instrument. Our case example uses real data from 12,803 participants on the validated 25-item Science Literacy Concept Inventory (SLCI) and a simulated dataset of all of these participants randomly guessing. The metric employs a weighted dot product of two normalized N-dimensional vectors where N is the number of possible overall scores (i.e., 26 for item scores ranging from 0 – 25). The percentages of students that select each particular answer choice on a multiple-choice test instrument provide the components of the vectors. The value of each dot product of vectors is a single number between 0 – 1, for each test item for each unique pair of populations. The single numbers enable easy comparisons of paired populations, such as binary genders. The number differences quickly identify those items which merit further investigation for explaining the differences. With sufficiently large populations, the item response curves of paired populations proved much closer to each other than did the item response curves between real participants and the simulated population of the same size that was randomly guessing.
      • Network analysis of the CSEM with Modified Module Analysis
      • PS-B.06
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Christopher Wheatley, Jie Yang, John Stewart

      • Type: Poster
      • This research applied Modified Module Analysis (MMA) to over 5000 student responses to the Conceptual Survey of Electricity and Magnetism (CSEM). The CSEM was given at two major US land-grant universities in the introductory Electricity and Magnetism courses. MMA is a powerful tool for analyzing large datasets that uses the correlation matrix to form a network, community detection algorithms, and bootstrapping. Many studies have investigated student misconceptions in Newtonian physics by analyzing instruments such as the Force Concept Inventory or the Force and Motion Conceptual Evaluation. These studies showed that students hold non-Newtonian views on classical mechanics even post-instruction. However, much less research has investigated misconceptions in E&M. This study identifies communities of correct and incorrect answers to the CSEM to explore the structure of student misconceptions.
  • Physics Education Research VII  

      • Student conceptual resources for understanding kinematics
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Cheyenne Broadfoot, Brynna Hansen, Amy Robertson

      • Type: Poster
      • Physics education research on student understanding of kinematics has largely focused on misconceptions and difficulties. Our project reports student resources for understanding kinematics -- ideas that we consider to be the “beginnings” of sophisticatedunderstandings. Our preliminary analysis highlighted four common resources that students are using to solve kinematics problems. In this poster, we will elaborate on the resources used most often by students and give examples from our preliminary research.
      • The Long-Term Effects of Learning Physics Through ISLE
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Danielle Bugge, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Poster
      • Today’s high school students need to develop abilities and skills that are applicable across many fields. Recommendations from the NGSS call for integrating science practices into learning of normative concepts in science classrooms. In my classroom, students learn physics through the Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE) approach. Based on previous studies, we know that ISLE students are capable of developing science-process abilities. However, how do we know if this approach to curriculum design and learning prepares students for success in the future? I administered a survey to alumni who learned physics through the ISLE approach and followed up the survey with interviews and a focus group. I report on the findings from this study with regard to what students remember learning, how their mindset changed during their time in the course, and what elements of their experience had an effect on and/or were transferrable to their future courses and careers.
      • Factors Associated with Students Graduating in STEM at a Military Academy
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jessica Dwyer, Wilson Gonzalez-Espada, Kimberly de La Harpe, David Meier

      • Type: Poster
      • The U.S. is not graduating enough science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) majors for the increasing number of available employment opportunities and national security needs. The purpose of this study was to quantify the magnitude of STEM attrition at the U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA). The study also identified factors associated with STEM attrition among students. Despite strong academic preparation, of the students who reported their intention to major in a STEM discipline as incoming freshmen, 36.4% switched and graduated with a non-STEM degree. The best predictors associated with students graduating with a STEM major were their initial intention and motivation to major in these disciplines upon arrival at USAFA and course grades in Calculus I, Calculus-based General Physics I and Applications of Chemistry I. These findings suggest that students motivated to major in STEM may switch out if they struggle with prerequisite quantitative courses.
      • Evaluation of student understanding of the hand rules in electromagnetism
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yikun Han, Lei Bao, Feipeng Pi

      • Type: Poster
      • In the Chinese high school physics curriculum, the Ampere's rule, the left-hand rule, and the right-hand rule are used to determine the direction of the magnetic field, the ampere and Lorentz force, and the direction of the electric current.Actually at different phases,students confused that which rule is more suitable,it causes inefficiency when they deal with problems.The central idea of these three rules is the cross product, teachers help students to build the concept of cross product,meanwhile training deep learning of electromagnetism knowledge.Therefore, through an assessment tool to understand the mastery of these three rules at different phases of their learning.
      • Students’ reasoning during qualitative physics problem solving
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bashirah Ibrahim, Lin Ding

      • Type: Poster
      • Reasoning is a predictor of learning and is a key skill needed for science. In physics, there is a lack of studies exploring how students reason with particular concepts when handling qualitative, conceptual physics questions. Our work is based on Kuhn’s(2004) framework which defines scientific reasoning as the conscious intent to seek new information to enhance knowledge and understanding. The core of Kuhn’s framework is theory-evidence coordination, and it emphasizes the importance of cognition for scientific reasoning. Fifty freshmen, with a calculus-based physics background, completed three open-ended qualitative physics questions. The problems, borrowed from published instruments, dealt with the energy conservation principle. Data from the students’ written and interview responses show (i) the students’ source of self-generated evidence, and (ii) their meta-cognition in answering the qualitative physics questions.
      • Ups and downs of ISLE-based reforms in an urban public university
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Diane Jammula, Sheehan Ahmed, Joshua Rutberg, Eugenia Etkina

      • Type: Poster
      • Research indicates that both students and instructors struggle when a course switches to implementing student-centered inquiry-oriented pedagogical approaches which engage students in construction of their own knowledge through experimentation and reasoning. One such approach is the ISLE approach that puts the students in the driver’s seat of learning. Instead of reading a book and working on problems the students working in groups engage in the activities that mirror the activities of physicists constructing and applying knowledge. In large room meetings they work on activities helping them invent new ideas and in labs they design their own experiments to test and apply those ideas. How do the students and the instructors respond to innovations? This poster will present data collected during one year of ISLE-based reforms at Rutgers, Newark, an urban public university. We will share our achievements and struggles.
      • Using the Popular “Shoot the Monkey” Demo to Teach Problem Solving*
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Joe Ross, Alexandru Maries, Robert Teese, Kathleen Koenig, Michele Chabot

      • Type: Poster
      • The “shoot the monkey” demonstration is a very popular and commonly used demonstration in projectile motion: a gun is aimed at a monkey hanging from a branch. At the instant the gun is fired, the monkey lets go, and of course, the bullet hits the monkey.Prior research has shown that demonstrations promote little learning if they are not preceded by questions related to the possible outcomes of the demonstration. We have taken this one step further by using this popular demonstration (which students often love) as the basis of an Interactive Video-Enhanced Tutorial (IVET). The “monkey-gun IVET” is designed to help students learn effective problem solving strategies by guiding them to use the physics of projectile motion to explain why the monkey gets hit. The IVET is designed based on principles of multimedia learning and is adaptive in that it provides different levels of scaffolding depending on students’ needs. This presentation will showcase all the different features of this IVET.
      • Teaching geometric optics through drawing ray diagrams
      • PS-B.07
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yue Xiao, JianWen Xiong, Lei Bao

      • Type: Poster
      • Drawing ray diagram is the kay strategy to solve optics problems. Through interviewing junior high school students in China, they reflect that they mostly memorize the final results of special cases to solve the problems in homework and exams, even problems about lens requesting drawing are also solved by memorizing special rays. It appears that the drawing ray diagrams is not emphasized in instruction, which leads to students’ inability to make connections between principles of geometric optics and the final outcomes that they memorized. In order to promote deep learning, a conceptual framework on geometric optics is introduced to map out students’ knowledge structures. Based on the conceptual framework, an assessment test is developed to evaluate students’ conceptual understanding of geometric optics. Results of the assessment will be discussed to emphasize the ray diagram is the new method to teach geometric optics.
  • Physics Education Research X  

      • Science of Light and Color Presented Through Examining Visual Arts
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Tetyana Antimirova
      • Type: Poster
      • In our modern society, art and science are often seen as unrelated, and sometimes even opposing human endeavors. However, a disconnect between science and art is finally being reconsidered, and the value of artistic creativity and imagination for careers in Science and Engineering is starting to be recognized. Moreover, an attempt to answer the question “what science ideas made their way into works of art and architecture” opens up the dialog between physicists and a general public. Examining representative artworks can be used to demonstrate the laws of physics, optics in particular. The presentation will demonstrate that the understanding of basic optics phenomena (absorption, scattering, reflection, refraction, diffraction and polarization of light) is absolutely essential for creating realistic paintings and drawings. Incorporating arts into science and engineering education and science outreach is a new approach that has the potential to captivate the audiences and unleash creativity.
      • How the Learning Assistant Experience Impacts Learning Assistants as Students
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Dreyfus, Bailey Cake, Natalie Schultz

      • Type: Poster
      • Learning Assistants (LAs) are undergraduate STEM students who participate in a pedagogy course and facilitate active learning among their peers in a variety of courses. Much of the existing research on LA programs focuses on the impact on the students taking courses with LAs, or on course transformation. In addition to this, we look at the impact on the LAs themselves, as students. We asked LAs in physics, other sciences, and math to reflect on how their LA experience has affected them, through interviews with fellow LAs and free-response surveys. We analyze these qualitative data to identify emerging themes. LAs found that their LA experiences had impacts on their conceptual understanding, metacognition, time management, confidence about public speaking and working with fellow students, and relationships with professors.
      • The teaching of Newton's second law through philosophical reflection Abstract
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Wilder Guerrero, Gilberto Castrejón

      • Type: Poster
      • The results of an investigation that seeks to investigate the effects of philosophical reflection on the teaching of the concept of force in Newton's second law at the university level are presented, under the focus of conceptual change. This research has been carried out in Honduras with students of the General Physics course at the National University of Agriculture. A pre / post instrument was designed to evaluate as a didactic sequence guided by philosophical reflection and, methodologically, a mixed design has been used. In the quantitative scope, an analysis of variance (ANOVA) was made, and the preliminary results show a significantly higher performance in the experimental group. The above is supported by a qualitative analysis that shows an overcoming of the alternative conceptions of the concept of force, as well as an improvement in the students' arguments.
      • The mediating role of personality and self-efficacy in academic achievement
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dona Hewagallage, John Stewart

      • Type: Poster
      • This study explored the mediational relationship between personality, self-efficacy, and academic achievement in university physics and mathematics classes. The sample consisted of 9684 students primarily pursuing engineering majors at a large eastern land-grant university in the US. Data were collected from both physics and calculus classes. The five-factor model of personality was measured with the Big Five Inventory. This model characterizes personality with five facets: agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism, and openness. Significant differences in personality and self-efficacy between men and women were identified. The neuroticism facet mediated the relationship between self-efficacy and gender. Self-efficacy mediated the relationship between the course grade and conscientiousness.
      • Comparing Physics and Math Anxiety in Science Majors at University
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Justin Hustoft
      • Type: Poster
      • Engaging college students who are not primarily studying physics and increasing their awareness of physics-related concepts is especially important to support the decision-making processes in society. Science-major students in a general physics course onclassical mechanics were given the Physics Goal Orientation Survey concurrently with the Mathematics Anxiety Rating Scale as pre- and post-course surveys. One goal was to determine how the students viewed physics and mathematics as related but separate fields. Data on physics attitudes and mathematics anxiety will establish a baseline against which future student learning outcomes and attitudes can be compared when curriculum changes in physics are implemented, such as an energy-first approach as reported in LeGresley, et al., 2019. Initial results of surveys will be presented at the summer meeting.
      • Superhero Physics as a Teaching Tool in Introductory Physics
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jasmine Jackson, Deepika Menon, James Overduin

      • Type: Poster
      • General introductory physics classes are at times challenging for instructors to motivate students to continue their studies in physics. This course often tends to weed out prospective physics majors—even those who were previously passionate about pursuing it. The methods and strategies that are utilized to teach physics play an essential role in the success rate of the course. The purpose of this project is to introduce a new approach to teaching physics using comics as a motivational tool, given that young students spend much of their time interacting with popular culture. With a multitude of physics topics to explore, comic books serve as a great avenue for engaging young students by presenting science topics within the context of pop culture and mainstream media. Within this study, we will analyze the effectiveness of comic books and superhero media in increasing student understanding of physics topics and student engagement in problem-solving.
      • How different lab settings affect students' attitude towards the labs
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Anna Karelina, Eugenia Etkina, Peter Bohacek, Matthew Vonk, David Brookes

      • Type: Poster
      • This poster shows the results of our investigation of students’ mental states during different labs. The students studied physics in an algebra-based introductory course with the Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE) approach. In one set of labs students had to design and conduct experiments with real apparatus, while in the other type of labs students had to analyze videos with pre-recorded experiments. We collected and analyzed students’ responses to a Likert scale survey with 7 questions related to the conditions of flow. We studied differences and common features of students’ responses after apparatus-based labs and after video-based labs.
      • A Community of Practice Approach to Identity Formation
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Claire Mullen, Brean Prefontaine, Kathleen Hinko, Claudia Fracchiolla

      • Type: Poster
      • In the last few years many studies have looked at understanding the main factors that influence discipline-based identity formation. A large number of these studies focus on identity formation from the standpoint of the individual, however research showsthat identity is a social construct that is highly dependent on the environment we are emerged in. In this study, we present an operationalization of the Community of Practice framework that can be used to study identity from the collective perspective. The different elements of the framework allow us to establish the individual’s positionality within the Community of Practice and the mechanisms within that community that help the individual become a more central member of the community and therefore develop a community identity. To demonstrate the use of the framework, we present findings of a study focused on the understanding of physics identity development of university students who facilitate informal physics programs.
      • Investigating research themes, partnerships, and funding for the Physics Education Research community

      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Rebecca Rosenblatt, Michael Rook

      • Type: Poster
      • This study will inform the Physics Education Research community about patterns of research topics, partnerships between researchers, and funding sources for the PER community over the last ten years. The study involves a textual analysis of all PERC proceedings between 2010 to 2019 to identify funding sources and determine patterns. PERC proceedings were selected given the central role of the Physics Education Research Conference to the PER community. PERC proceedings represent the community across scope of project from small to large, across stage of project from beginning to finished, and from new researchers to those established in the field. Findings are contrasted with those from the Learning Sciences community to provide context for understanding the significance of patterns. The goal of this work is to provide insight into the community’s history and ten-year trajectory so that the community can consider how to move the field forward in new directions.
      • Ground Verification of NASA's GPM Project- Citizen Science
      • PS-B.10
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Karen Williams
      • Type: Poster
      • NASA and JAXA have been predicting precipitation falling on the Earth for several years through the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) project. They are doing so by using satellites equipped with global microwave imagers as well as dual frequency radar. The satellites can sweep the planet in ninety-three minutes. This poster will show where teachers can get information about the GPM project and how they may access the data (and much more) through Giovanni software. I have done verification studies comparing their predictions to my CoCoRaHS station data. Verification of their predictions is being done by many groups. How 5G cell service will affect this project is still being argued. Students could download local data and learn about the analysis of data and how technologies are developed and tested. This could be used for outreach and to motivate students and interest the community as people of all ages are interested in the weather.
  • Physics Education Research in Labs  

      • Learning Outcomes in Simple Harmonic Motion Labs Aided by Simulations
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Emily Allen, Sheila Sagear, Andrew Duffy, Manher Jariwala

      • Type: Contributed
      • Computer simulations have been used to support student learning in physics to boost conceptual understanding and make labs more widely accessible. To better understand their impact on student learning outcomes, the use of HTML5-based computer simulationsfor topics in mechanics were investigated in a large, algebra-based, studio physics course for life science students at a private, research-intensive institution. For the past three years, we have used an A/B testing methodology to compare learning outcomes associated with a lab activity on simple harmonic motion. Different groups in this study included students using traditional hands-on equipment only, a simulation only, or, a hybrid combination of both. We will present our findings of this study in the context of previous work and discuss the larger implications of the use of simulations in physics education.
      • Re-defining Lab Norms via Professional Learning Communities: Meeting the Constraints
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Smadar Levy, Zehorit Kapach, Esther Magen, Edit Yerushalmi

      • Type: Contributed
      • We present a study of a large-scale intervention designed to shift lab instruction away from "cookbook" lab norms. The intervention was implemented in a network of Professional Learning Communities of Israeli high-school physics teachers (N=250; ~20% of the national workforce). The intervention was tailored to respond to findings on teachers' dissatisfaction with the limited scope of experimental design employed in traditional labs, as well as the highly constrained setting in which these teachers work: a high-stakes exam setting, limited resources, and diverse groups of students. The intervention followed two design guidelines: a) restructuring traditional labs, by encouraging students to reflect on the considerations underlying the experimental design; b) an evidence-based learning process involving teachers in collaborative reflection on classroom enactments of the restructured labs. We found that most teachers chose to carry out the restructured labs, even though they expressed concerns about the demands, as compared to the standardized exams.
      • MAPLE, the Modeling Assessment for Physics Laboratory Experiments
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Pollard, Laura Ríos, Michael Fox, Alexandra Werth, H. Lewandowski

      • Type: Contributed
      • Physics laboratory classes offer great potential for learning, often in ways that are distinct and complementary to theory-focused courses. However, there are relatively few research-based assessments that are suitable for use in an upper-division physics laboratory course. Our group has created a new set of research-based assessments for measuring a central aspect of laboratory learning: modeling. The assessments, known as the Modeling Assessment for Physics Laboratory Experiments (MAPLE), are computer-based surveys with two parts. The first part is a "choose your own adventure," while the second part consists of standard coupled multiple response items. There are three surveys in MAPLE, each contextualizing modeling within different experimental apparatus: a pendulum, an op-amp circuit, and a laser incident on two polarizers. I present the development process and theoretical foundations of MAPLE, describe the assessments themselves, and discuss how they can be used to measure and improve laboratory learning.
      • A New Advanced Lab Textbook, with Support for Remote Instruction
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Walter Smith, Melissa Eblen-Zayas, Kozminski Joseph, Jami Shepherd, Paul Freeman

      • Type: Contributed
      • We have co-authored a new textbook, “Experimental Physics: Principles and Practice for the Laboratory”, inspired by the 2014 AAPT report “Recommendations for the Undergraduate Physics Laboratory Curriculum”. We discuss the philosophy and organization of the book, and the support that will be offered for remote education, assuming it is needed this year. We also detail aspects that differ from previous texts. For example, ours is written by a team of 17 research-active authors, allowing authoritative writing about techniques relevant to all major areas of physics; detailed instructor manuals are included so that you can confidently teach outside your area of expertise. As of abstract submission, development of remote instruction materials is only beginning. They will include a variety of approaches, such as modifications of some experiments so they can be done at home using modestly priced kits, as well as “choose your own adventure”-style video walkthroughs of other experiments.
      • Re-defining Lab Norms via Professional Learning Communities: Instructors' Expectations
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Edit Yerushalmi, Smadar Levy, Zehorit Kapach, Esther Magen

      • Type: Contributed
      • We present a study of a large-scale intervention designed to shift lab instruction away from "cookbook" lab norms. The intervention was implemented in a network of Professional Learning Communities of Israeli high-school physics teachers (N=250; ~20% of the national workforce), operating in a high-stakes exam setting, with limited resources, catering to diverse groups of students. An introductory questionnaire examined teachers' framing of the instructional lab norms as compared to an experimental research lab (via a modified E-CLASS), as well as the lab goals that the teachers valued. The questionnaire was an integral part of the teachers' learning process. The teachers acknowledged the disparity between their optimal lab goals and prevailing ones, in particular as concerns experimental design. We discuss the implications for the design of an intervention addressing both teachers' interest in change as well as the constraints imposed by the setting in which they work.
      • Thematic analysis of student manipulations of the PhET simulation “Fluid Pressure and Flow
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Raymond Zich, Rebecca Rosenblatt, Amber Sammons, Andrew Princer, Jeffrey Rosauer

      • Type: Contributed
      • Student issues with both understanding electrical potential and difficulties with interpreting diagrams have been well explored. A major issue in student ranking of electric potentials is identification of the sign of the electric charge. An investigation of modifying traditional equipotential diagrams based on theories of visual affordances to improve students’ recognition of electric change sign when ranking electric potential was undertaken. A prior study showed equipotential diagram modifications significantly increased student gaze times at the diagrams without increasing students’ overall correctness rates. In this study modifications of color and line style were made to equipotential lines to increase visual salience of indicators of change sign. Students were randomly assigned to the traditional or modified diagrams and asked to compare electric potentials for indicated points on given diagrams. Pre- and post-test comparisons and the results of student interviews will be presented to clarify the specific issues students have reading equipotential diagrams.
      • Exploring student use of "goes like" thinking when linearizing data
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Charlotte Zimmerman, Alexis Olsho, Andrew Boudreaux, Suzanne White Brahmia

      • Type: Contributed
      • "Goes like" thinking refers to the way that physics experts quickly relate the behavior of one changing quantity to that of another, e.g., "the electric field goes like one over R squared.'" This statement is deeply meaningful and intuitive to experts, who understand why other quantities such as charge are omitted; however, it is not clear that students interpret this phrase the same way. One application of "goes like" reasoning is data linearization---choosing quantities to use for the independent and dependent axes to produce a linear graph whose slope has meaning. Preliminary work suggests that students may not understand the value and meaning of data linearization. We aim to describe our attempts to design and assess online lab curriculum in an introductory physics course addressing data linearization, and discuss some of the ways students make sense of their data analysis using "goes like" reasoning.
      • Challenges and Opportunities for Innovation and Research in Physics Lab Education
      • PAR-C.09
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Benjamin Zwickl
      • Type: Invited
      • I overview three aspects of physics lab instruction where there is a tremendous opportunity for education researchers and innovative practitioners to impact student learning. The first area is shifting the theory-centric culture of physics education to abalanced emphasis on experiment and theory, which reflects professional practice within physics. I will show why the laboratory should be recognized as a critical environment for learning complex problem-solving and as highly relevant for students' career preparation. The second area is embedding scientific practices within labs. Within the growing literature there is variation in viewing practices as discrete and transferrable skills versus integrated and highly contextualized, which has implications for researchers and educators. Third, I see potential for more project-based courses to blur the boundaries between lab instruction and research experiences by integrating a range of practices and reframing the purpose of a lab, which can affect students' autonomy and identity within the lab.
  • President's Town Hall (Live Stream)  

      • President's Town Hall (Live Stream)
      • PL06
      • Mon 07/20, 3:30PM - 4:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Plenary
      • AAPT Board continues to be excited to work with all our members to enact our new 2019 strategic plan consistent with our mission, vision and core values, which has the following broad goals: (1) continue to engage and invigorate the vibrant community of physics students and physics educators, (2) enhance professional development opportunities for physics educators, (3) enhance the visibility and role of AAPT as an expert on physics education policy and practice, and (4) enrich the field by supporting the diversity of physics students and educators at all levels. Please join us at the 2020 Summer President’s Town Hall Meeting for a session in which you will have an opportunity to ask questions and give suggestions to those in the AAPT Presidential Chain and the Executive Officer about moving forward with our strategic plan. The session will start with a short overview by the President and then will be followed by videos of the candidates running for various AAPT Board positions this Fall. Then a Q&A and discussion will follow in which the AAPT members, those in the Presidential Chain and the Executive Officer will engage.
  • Professional Skills for Students  

      • Professional Skills for Students
      • PAR-A.07
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brian Zamarripa Roman
      • Type: Panel
      • This interactive panel focuses on developing professional skills for graduate students and other early-stage researchers. This session will address professional concerns brought up by graduate students during the past Graduate Student Topical Discussions. Topics covered may include: preparing for careers after graduate school, becoming integrated with the community, developing research skills, and disseminating your work. While this session is aimed toward graduate students, we welcome undergraduates who are interested in this professional development opportunity or curious about life as a graduate student!
  • Promoting and Supporting Equity and Inclusion in STEM Introductory Courses  

      • Why Is It Critical to Focus on Making Physics Classes Equitable and Inclusive?
      • PAR-A.08
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Z.Yasemin Kalender, Emily Marshman, Christian Schunn, Timothy Nokes-Malach, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Invited
      • The discipline of physics suffers from low diversity at all educational levels. Our research seeks to understand the issues related to representation of women in physics related fields and to enhance diverse groups of students to advance and succeed in physics and related fields. In this talk, we will describe the role of students’ motivational characteristics in introductory level calculus-based physics courses. These studies aim to understand observed gender differences in students’ motivational factors that may arise, e.g., from societal biases against women’s ability to excel in physics. We will also discuss the link between prior knowledge and students’ learning outcomes across different student demographics and how motivational factors can explain this mechanism. We will describe how we use quantitative tools, such as Structural Equation Modeling, to evaluate complex models of student characteristics, attitudes as well as student learning outcomes. Finally, we will also describe how small and large-scale interventions can mitigate the representation issues, and can create inclusive and equitable learning environments.
      • Characterizing Conceptual Understanding in Introductory Physics using Funds of Knowledge, Mental Models and Resource Framework

      • PAR-A.08
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Juniar Lucien
      • Type: Invited
      • Science education studies framed around funds of knowledge, mental models and student resource framework appear to have three general characteristics: they are learner centered, tend to deviate from the deficit student model of teaching that present learners as empty vessels, but rather present learners as individual beings with different sets of skills and needs. However, there is not a consensus on the ways, as far as we know, in which these three concepts relate with each other. We conduct a systematic inquiry of the literature available for how funds of knowledge, mental models, and resource framework are respectively used in science education, and present a scheme relating these three frameworks that can be utilized when evaluating students’ ideas about physical concepts such as energy. Considering how those frameworks connect with one another might provide additional avenues to further explore how students' conceptual understanding of the physical world are formed.
      • Rethinking Foundational STEM Courses: Pulling Weeds or Growing Deep Roots?
      • PAR-A.08
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Timothy McKay
      • Type: Invited
      • At research universities, foundational STEM courses are offered to hundreds or even thousands of students every year. Unfortunately, success in these courses is neither universal nor equitably distributed. Development of such courses and research into their efficacy should be a shared endeavor, yet it often takes place only locally - one discipline and one campus at a time. The Sloan Equity and Inclusion in STEM Introductory Courses project aims to change this. Motivated by a focus on equity, inclusion, and excellence as central goals of the reform process, SEISMIC brings together more than a hundred individuals from ten institutions in a collaborative structure inspired by ‘big science’ research projects. This talk will describe the emergence and early progress of this R&D project, including parallel data analysis, coordinated experimentation, continuous exchange of speakers, and extended annual meetings.
  • Recruiting Retaining and Empowering Underrepresented HighSchool Teachers of Physics  

      • Recruiting Retaining and Empowering Underrepresented HighSchool Teachers of Physics
      • PAR-E.10
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Mark Hannum
      • Type: Panel
  • Remote Delivery of Advanced Physics Labs Lessons and Victories  

      • Resources from ALPhA for Fall Advanced Lab Classes
      • PAR-F.09
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ashley Carter
      • Type: Contributed
      • The Advanced Laboratory Physics Association (ALPhA) had meetings with ~30 advanced lab instructors from around the US and the world in May 2020. Many of those instructors talked about how hard it was to transition to online or remote lab classes during the Spring when the COVID-19 pandemic hit and about their worries for the Fall. These instructors asked ALPhA for two things: 1) increased communication to allow instructors to share ideas or to team up to solve problems, and 2) a curated list/database/website/document of resources that includes instructors’ experiences. During June and July, ALPhA will focus on these two requests by facilitating member communication and posting instructor-curated resources. As secretary of ALPhA, I will report back about these resources and relay the most important take-aways. To get up-to-date information or to join the conversation, please visit the ALPhA website at advlab.org.
      • A Home-Built Geiger-Müller Counter Based Modern Physics lab
      • PAR-F.09
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Fontana
      • Type: Contributed
      • In response to the COVID-19 epidemic, Seattle University moved all courses to remote instruction for spring quarter 2020. The Modern Physics Laboratory course PHYS 2060 was adapted by organizing it around the building, programming, and implementation of a home-built Geiger-Müller counter. Students had no prior LabVIEW experience and most had no electronics experience. They were provided with a National Instruments myDAQ board, an electronics breadboard, electronics components, and a schematic diagram [1] and given synchronous instruction via Zoom. They wrote LabVIEW VI's for lab bench tools and automated data acquisition. They designed and executed three nuclear physics experiments using their own software and hardware. Relative to the in-person format of the course, students executed a narrower range of experiments and did not study historic experimental literature, but gained data acquisition and electronics skills, experience in building and troubleshooting apparatus, and the satisfaction and self-confidence of making their projects from scratch.
      • Advanced Laboratory at Home: From Single Photons to Chaos
      • PAR-F.09
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Margaret Koker, Douglas Martin

      • Type: Contributed
      • Lawrence’s Advanced Laboratory course trains students in experimental physics. Using research equipment, students engage deeply with real physics while learning scientific communication. Students worked on three self-selected projects using analog and digital electronics, ranging from single photon detectors to chaotic dynamics. Each student created an extension to one project, consisting of design and prototyping as well as collection and analysis of data. One student built an analog electronics neuron, firing upon exposure to a trumpet played at 392 Hz. Students shared project results with their scientific community via a scientific symposium (after students attended the APS Virtual April Meeting), an issue of Advanced Laboratory Letters at Lawrence (after PRL-based journal club discussions), and video demonstrations. Join us for a discussion of our approaches to evaluation and feedback, inclusive strategies, and course (and Zoom-related) fatigue. We will present what worked, what fell flat, and what surprised us along the way.
      • Teaching an Advanced Acoustics Laboratory Course without a Laboratory
      • PAR-F.09
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Ronald Kumon
      • Type: Contributed
      • During the Spring 2020 quarter, the COVID-19 pandemic precluded access to our acoustics laboratory. In response, I redeveloped the experiments of our acoustics lab course in several ways. For some introductory activities, I employed videos to show basic concepts and methods in place of lab demonstrations and used applets to maintain some student interactivity. However, for most of the specialized experiments, I was able to draw upon past student work archived in electronic laboratory notebooks to extract photos, setup details, and experimental data sets. I then used that information to write activities that described the experimental methods, but required the current students to visualize, analyze, and interpret the data. To facilitate the course remotely, I used electronic laboratory notebooks to deliver and receive content. Preliminary indications are that the students are obtaining a similar understanding of the experimental methods and possibly better understanding of the data analysis than previous students.
      • Student Design of Advanced Lab Experiments at Home using Available Resources
      • PAR-F.09
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Randall Tagg
      • Type: Contributed
      • Our Junior Lab requires four experiments per semester. In spring 2020 the final two experiments were done by students at home. They were asked to design their own experiments using available resources. Extra credit was given for an inventory of these resources, which varied quite widely amongst students. Details and computer code for one possible experiment was given to students: the use of mobile phone image sensors for cosmic ray detection. An alternative to the final experiment was to submit instead a white paper describing plans to develop an application of physics to the Covid19 pandemic; students were sent a primer on possible topics. Students were individually counseled on their projects by email and through Zoom meetings. The capacity of students to independently conceive of and execute experiments varied widely and revealed the need to better equip students with knowledge and skills to pose problems, deal with ambiguity, and work resourcefully with physical devices, materials, and supporting literature.
  • Remote Delivery of Introductory Physics Labs Lessons and Victories  

      • Hands-on Lab Experiences With Social Distancing
      • PAR-A.11
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Wolfgang Bauer
      • Type: Contributed
      • The essence of laboratory experiences is the gathering of data, analyzing data, forming hypotheses, comparing with models and theories, discussion sources of and estimating statistical and systematic uncertainties, and drawing conclusions, usually in theform of a lab report. All of these components have been replicated in a complete set of first- and second-semester laboratory online experiments at Michigan State University, which can be used to enable undergraduate students to obtain authentic laboratory experiences while staying off campus. The availability of these online labs is crucial, even in universities planning to resume on-campus teaching in the fall, because groups of students in high risk groups need accommodations to remain sheltered during the pandemic. All of these experiments do not need special software, can be run on a web-browser on any computer, tablet device, or even smartphone, and in this way do not contribute to widening the digital divide.
      • Hands-On Laboratories in Online Physics: For Now and Post-COVID
      • PAR-A.11
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Martin Connors, Farook Al-Shamali

      • Type: Contributed
      • Many instructors have recently been thrust into the online delivery of physics courses. When Athabasca University pioneered distance education physics in the 1990s with standard freshman mechanics and E&M content, labs could not be done remotely. Then, calculators able to control detectors, such as sonic rangers, became available. A “home lab” approach was developed, which later extended to other subjects, allowing students to perform quality physics experiments with real data, using a lab kit borrowed from the library and sent by mail. Through time our highly successful home lab approach has changed to use what are now common household items like smartphones. We discuss how to implement physics home labs now and urge retaining them when “normal” status returns. In the overall adjustment to a post-COVID world, we argue that successes with our home labs show that this approach should become part of the “new normal”.
      • Conducting a Summer Introductory Laboratory on Short Notice Using iOLab
      • PAR-A.11
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jack Dostal
      • Type: Contributed
      • This summer, Wake Forest University's introductory calculus-based physics courses were delivered fully remotely for the first time. The laboratory portion of the course was primarily conducted using the iOLab Wireless Lab System. We moved to the system on relatively short notice. We conducted lab meetings through synchronous sessions on Zoom to introduce each lab. Following the sessions, students worked on the experiments independently or occasionally in pairs. I will report some of the successes and challenges we experienced.
      • Teaching the Introductory Laboratories Remotely: Lessons Learned
      • PAR-A.11
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Tatiana Krivosheev
      • Type: Contributed
      • We present our experience of conducting first semester calculus-based introductory physics laboratories remotely in the Spring 2020 semester. Six laboratories were redesigned to give students maximally hands-on experience under the restrains of coronavirus stay-at-home conditions. The video analysis by using Tracker software was used to collect and process the experimental data for most of these labs. The lessons learned allowed us to confidently teach the full semester of the labs remotely the following Summer 2020 semester.
      • Virtual Reality Physics Labs
      • PAR-A.11
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by William Miner
      • Type: Contributed
      • Physics labs have been traditionally hands on courses requiting students in the lab to set up specific equipment designed to demonstrate explicit physical phenomena that can then be measured and analyzed. This makes the lab a two-part process. The first is developing the techniques necessary to set up the equipment, understand its functionality, and then use it carefully to take data. The second part is analyzing and interpreting that data to see if it fits the physical phenomena being demonstrated. In general, this part of the lab is done outside the laboratory. Providing the student with a video, a simulation, or simply a data set does not implement the hands on part. The student can have this experience via the use of a virtual reality laboratory. A variety of virtual reality labs for both physics I and physics II will be discussed.
      • Rethinking the value of remote undergraduate physics laboratory work
      • PAR-A.11
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Drew Rosen, Angela Kelly

      • Type: Contributed
      • The global pandemic caused by COVID-19 has provoked an abrupt disruption of postsecondary education on an unprecedented scale. The present study reviews the nature of laboratory work and demonstrates how remote labs provide a viable alternative to in-person learning. Nearly every college in the U.S. has transitioned to remote learning in a short time frame. Regardless of when students return to higher education institutions, this disruption will influence the way laboratory-based coursework is conceptualized. With over half a million undergraduate physics students, the advantages of remote learning may expand STEM access to students who may have been traditionally underrepresented. Physics faculty have been generally hesitant to implement online labs for various reasons such as time, inexperience, and questionable rigor. This paper reviews the historical progression of laboratory work in the U.S., with a critique of the evolving nature of its purpose and relationship to students’ performance in physics.
  • Rethinking the Boundaries of the Laboratory Classroom  

      • Even My Robots Are Non-Binary: Questioning Borders of Ideas and Land
      • PAR-G.09
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Mylene DiPenta
      • Type: Invited
      • What helps students transfer ideas between labs, lectures, non-school projects? Why are students in my electronics lab so angry that there is no clear border between “conductor” and “insulator”? I’m experimenting with creating connections between ideas by making play-dough circuits, teaching metrology, and analyzing assumptions about borders. Borders as binary and absolute took hold ~500 years ago, alongside the scientific revolution. So did the rise of the nation-state, narrowing of gender roles, criminalization of same-gender sex, invention of race and white supremacy, creation of policing and prisons, and of course colonialism. Science, along with many other disciplines, suddenly became more centrally controlled and rigid in its borders. What can each of these borders teach us about the others? What could non-binary borders look like, and how do they affect lab learning and teaching? Please join us if you are interested in informal science, laboratory assessment, gender fluidity, colonialism, or of course non-binary robots.
      • Connecting Physics and Engineering through a Modernization of the Advanced Physics Laboratory Curriculum

      • PAR-G.09
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by J. Archibald Peters, Mel Sabella, Austin Harton, Russell Ceballos, Justin Akujieze

      • Type: Invited
      • The current environment in the STEM workforce is one of unprecedented challenges and opportunities, demanding innovation and leadership skills. Current students must be forward-thinking to solve grand challenges and take advantage of diverse opportunities. To thrive in this workforce, students need a robust STEM curriculum that focuses on traditional and modern perspectives to address science and engineering applications. The goal of this project is a complete modernization of the advanced laboratory curriculum for our physics and engineering-physics students. The project has outcomes that include: 1. Outlining a curriculum plan for the modernization of our applied physics/engineering laboratory with the inclusion of modern equipment, applications, and new experimental Learning Lab modules 2. Establishing a student learning community that will inform instructional revisions by incorporating student input through the use of the Learning Assistant Program. 3. Providing outreach opportunities for increasing STEM interest by utilizing the student-developed modules at local high schools.
      • Letters Home: Transcending the Boundary Between Lab and Family/Friends
      • PAR-G.09
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Charles Ramey II
      • Type: Invited
      • Communication is an important skill in all fields of STEAM learning environments, including physics lab courses. The AAPT Recommendations for the Undergraduate Physics Curriculum identify ‘communicating physics’ as one of six major learning outcome focus areas for undergraduate physics labs. But, to whom? Traditionally, physics classrooms (including labs) are a black-box where the learning process is shrouded from stakeholders such as policymakers, practitioners, and families. My research investigates the pedagogical method Letters Home (Lane, 2014), which provides students with the opportunity to communicate beyond the borders that constrain practical lab reports. In my implementation, the Letters Home method tasks students with writing letters to a non-physicist then gradually to a graduate student or a physics professor. We used the AAPT Recommendations to inform development of a coding scheme. However, the recommendations still contain ‘communicating physics’ within the boundaries of a black-box. In this talk, I will present about my implementation of Letters Home as a foothold into exploring the question, How can we develop writing activities that extend beyond the traditional borders of the classroom and communicate with all stakeholders? Lane, W. B. (2014). Letters home as an alternative to lab reports. The Physics Teacher, 52(7), 397-399.
      • Constructing physical and experimental models in upper-division lab courses
      • PAR-G.09
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Laura Ríos
      • Type: Invited
      • Recently, discourse on the role of laboratory courses asks “What are labs for?” Notably, there does not appear to be an equivalent discourse for lecture-based content or courses. When data show small or null gains on learning assessments for theory courses, we innovate in these courses; we do not throw them away. I embrace a similar orientation of investment and innovation in lab courses. In this talk, I will discuss how I have begun to transform my research practices align with this orientation towards lab courses by focusing on a specific project. My current research involves uncovering how students begin to construct models during their upper-division modern physics lab sequence. Using the Modeling Framework for Experimental Physics as a theoretical foundation, the lab’s evaluative tools lab focus on how students use physical principles combined with experimental assumptions or simplifications to gain a deeper conceptual understanding of the experiments they endeavor.
  • Retired Physicist's Meet-up  

      • Retired Physicist's Meet-up
      • STPAR-10
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Donnelly
      • Type: Event
  • SPS Undergraduate Poster Session  

      • Project Based Learning: Physics-I with MatLab
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yara Abazah, Leyki Reynoso, Kalani Hettiarachchilage, Neel Haldolaarachchige

      • Type: Poster
      • Kinematic concepts are simulated with MatLab. Project-based assignments are done as the class progresses throughout the semester. Assignment per chapter is given with a few selected and challenging questions. Questions are first solved analytically then computationally simulated to get the behavior of practically relevant variables. Many body problems with kinematics, dynamics, energy conservation, rotational motion, gravitation, and simple-harmonic-motion have been solved. The main focus is given to simulate practically relevant problems, in which some problems are not possible to solve analytically. Solving selected problems analytically helped students to get deeper understating of the concept whereas simulating analytically-difficult problems with MatLab helped them to learn and use scientific programming for problem-solving and get a better understanding of the concepts. At the end of the semester group projects are done to simulate selected applications. The project results are presented and discussed in the class.
      • A Tale of Two Sections: Work, Energy, and Different Systems
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Claire Allen, Brant Hinrichs

      • Type: Poster
      • It is well known that students struggle with thinking about work and energy in the context of different system choices. University Modeling Instruction (UMI) tries to address this by using the system schema representation (SS) and energy pie charts (EPC) An SS is a diagram that helps students explicitly identify which objects are inside their system and which are not. EPC are diagrams that explicitly help students track the relative amounts of different forms of energy inside their system, how they change over time, and whether energy is entering or leaving the system. We report the results of an exam problem based on the literature for a first semester algebra-based introductory physics class. There were two sections, with very similar student populations, taught by the same instructor, using the same materials, yet one section was much more successful than the other. We compare these results to results from the literature.
      • A Novel Method of Measuring Airplane Thrust
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Margaret Capalbo
      • Type: Poster
      • Airplane thrust is currently measured using a complex equation that requires many thermodynamic measurements, such as air pressures, mass flow rates, and air velocities. To provide a new, more direct method of thrust measurement and a cross check for pilots, a device that is attached to the engine mounts that can measure force or a compressive load is needed. Annular piezoelectric washers have been studied to understand their properties, such as resolution and linearity. Sample piezoelectric sensors were calibrated on an in-lab test stand according to various torques Calibrated piezoelectric sensors were installed and tested on a PT6 engine test stand within the aviation department and showed a correlation between frequency and thrust measurement.
      • Project-Based Learning: Designing New Lab Setup
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Lucus Cordova, Avee Patel, Kalani Hettiarachchilage, Neel Haldolaarachchige

      • Type: Poster
      • Home built, easy use and low-cost freefall apparatus is reported. It has two important sections: photogate timer with two photogates and electromagnet with clicker switch. We select a very small electromagnet that works with 12 V DC and can hold a maximum weight of 20 pounds. All the clamps are designed and 3D printed. There are two different types of clamps; one for photogate and the other for cylindrical shape electromagnet. Assembly of the complete system will take only a few minutes and in general classroom, every two or four-member student group can do the experiment independently. A small electromagnet is set up at the top of the regular lab stand with a metal rod. Two photogates are set below the lab stand. Any object with a metal tip can be attached to the electromagnet. Times between photogates are taken with increasing distance between photogates. The gravitational constant is confirmed within one percent error.
      • On Chemical Potential of Phonons in Einstein Solid Model
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jixuan Hou
      • Type: Poster
      • Thermodynamic quantities of the Einstein solid model are studied via the microcanonical approach. We point out that the number of phonos in Einstein solid model cannot be defined independently and thus the chemical potential of phonos cannot be defined in the microcanonical ensemble. The chemical potential of phonos can be calculated only if the number of phonons can fluctuate. And we prove that the chemical potential of phonos in Einstein solid model strictly equals to zero in other ensembles.
      • Assessing Shifts in Lab Assistant Attitudes
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jessica Martin, Nathan Powers*

      • Type: Poster
      • Many of the physics lab courses at BYU have shifted their focus from highly structured, concept-reinforcement to a more open-ended project-based approach to exploration and investigation. This new approach to labs requires a change in the role of lab assistants, which is often at odds with what new lab assistants expect their role to be. Even after training, they can revert back to concept-focused behavior. We investigate how a new training process involving targeted training meetings, peer observations assessments, self-evaluations, and reflection tools, impacts the lab assistant perception attitudes in three main areas--leadership, knowledge construction, and technical skills. We use a codified system to analyze responses from the lab assistants to determine if their attitudes have solidified.
      • iTEBD method for ground state properties computation
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Zhiyao Ning, Daoxin Yao* , Guangyi Liang

      • Type: Poster
      • The study on physical quantities in ground state quantum multi-body system can get not only the statics properties but also the dynamical properties of the system. We use infinite time-evolving block decimation (iTEBD) to compute the n particles 1-D Ising spin chain with periodic boundary condition and get the normalization ground state in expression of matrix product state (MPS). After contract the MPS we get the reduced density matrix of the ground state system, applying physical operators on which we can get the physical quantities we need. The ground state energy is compared with the exact diagonalization result and show pinpoint accuracy. For further research, we are embarking on improving the algorithm to computing the imaginary time correlation function of the system.
      • Silicon Nitride Metalenses for Polarization-depended and Multi-wavelength Imaging
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jianwei Qin
      • Type: Poster
      • As one of the emerging semiconductor materials, SiN’s excellent dielectric properties, high material stability, and dispersion controllability make it widely used in both linear and nonlinear all-optical integrated devices. Here, we designed a single-layer metasurface using silicon nitride posts and realized high-transmittance metalens. Existing solutions for multi-wavelength meta-optics inevitably increase the device thickness and system complexity, whereas the refractive and diffractive counterparts also limit the polarization-sensitive lenses with a small numerical aperture(NA). By creating a single-layer array of SiN elliptical posts with different sizes and orientations, we introduced a modulation scheme to design multi-wavelength metalens which can work on different orthogonal polarizations. Our approach realized a polarization-depended achromatic metalens with large NA.
      • Thematic analysis of student manipulations of the PhET simulation “Fluid Pressure and Flow”

      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jeffrey Rosauer, Andrew Princer, Justin Szela, Grant Kaufman, Rebecca Rosenblatt

      • Type: Poster
      • Student difficulties with fluid statics and dynamics concepts often persist with conventional instruction. A curriculum was developed using a simulation to improve student understanding of fluid statics and dynamics taught in an introductory algebra-based physics courses for life science students. Screen capture videos were made of students completing a 20-minute guided inquiry tutorial that used the PhET simulation “Fluid Pressure and Flow”. These videos were studied using qualitative thematic analysis to identify common actions and patterns of actions as students worked through the curriculum. Patterns observed from this analysis are compared and contrasted with the patterns made by experts working with the simulation. Additionally, pre- and post-activity assessments of student knowledge of fluid speed and pressure in pipes were made. These data were examined to establish what connections exist between actions made while working with the simulation and changes in students conceptual understanding of fluids.
      • Conceptions of Community Among Physics Majors and Learning Assistants
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jason Starita*, Gary White

      • Type: Poster
      • In this study, the experiences of students in the Physics LA program are compared to the experiences of those who study physics but have not participated in the program at the George Washington University. We are interested in how participation in the LA program influences physics identity and how the students conceptualize the physics community. We analyze 15 interviews conducted by students belonging to three different populations (five from each population): LAs who are not physics majors, LAs who are physics majors, and physics majors who are not LAs. By analyzing the coded language used by interviewees, we hope to better understand how participation in the LA program effects beliefs of community. The results of this study will be used to identify critical elements of LA program structure that influence physics identity and inform how beliefs of community influences both LAs and physics majors in their physics identity development
      • How Force And Energy Notation Affects The Way Students Say It
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dayna Swanson, Brant Hinrichs

      • Type: Poster
      • To facilitate learning in the physics classroom, University Modeling Instruction uses a consistent symbol pattern within each concept. For example, the symbol is Ek for kinetic energy, Eint for internal energy, etc. and ?????????? for gravitational force by Earth on Ball, ?????????? for contact force by Rope on Sled, etc. For energy, we find that although the subscript appears on the right-hand side, no students ever say “energy kinetic” or “energy internal”. They say what we expect – “kinetic energy” and “internal energy”. In contrast, for force, with the super-script on the right-hand side, 40% of the time students say “force gravity” for ?????????? and “force contact” for ??????????, while with the super-script on the left-hand side (i.e. ??? ??????? and ??? ??????? ), use of “force gravity” and “force contact” drops to less than 2%. We discuss some initial ideas for why students might say the symbols differently.
      • Electrostatics and Riemann Surfaces
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Spencer Tamagni, Costas Efthimiou

      • Type: Poster
      • Using techniques from geometry and complex analysis in their simplest form, we present a derivation of electric fields on surfaces with non-trivial topology. A byproduct of this analysis is an intuitive visualization of elliptic functions when their argument is complex-valued. The underlying connections between these techniques and the theory of Riemann surfaces are also explained.
      • Trajectory of Flying Card
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Yanbo Wang, Shidong Zhu, Donghao Wu

      • Type: Poster
      • A card with an initial velocity and initial angular velocity can fly in the air for a while, and finally it will fall on the ground. During the flying process, the air friction and viscous resistance act on the card continuously so that the kinestate of the card changes all the time. This makes the trajectory of a flying card look like a question mark. We first use kinetic equation to analyze the trajectory and make an assumption. Then, we use camera to collect necessary statistics of a flying card to explore the real trajectory and check the assumption we have put forward before. Our experimental and theoretical results match well.
      • Precise analysis of a particle’s motion on an elliptical track
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kai Yan
      • Type: Poster
      • Particles’ motion on a circular track is commonly discussed in elementary Physics. This paper extends the precise analysis to the elliptical condition and friction is considered. The link between the velocity of a particle and its position on an elliptical track with friction is accurately established, essentially based on the transformation of angels through analytical geometry. After identifying conditions in which the particle won’t fall, the whole process of the motion is depicted.
      • Dynamic Analysis of the Falling Process of Disc Tower
      • SPS
      • Sun 07/19, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Shidong Zhu
      • Type: Poster
      • Identical discs are stacked one on top of another to form a freestanding tower, if the bottom one gets pulled out, the upper ones will stagger a distance from each other. From the slow motion it can be found that the disks will not stagger before fallingon the ground. The reason for the stagger is the tower’s rotation around the center of mass. And we work out the condition that the tower does not collapse in the first order approximation. Our experimental results coincide the graph very well.
  • Solo PER  

      • Solo PER
      • STPAR-1
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Steve Maier
      • Type: Topical
      • Are you the only professional active in PER within your department? Are there only one or two colleagues in close proximity you can talk “PER shop” with? The membership of Solo PER is larger than you may think, and more diverse than most suspect. Join usfor this topical discussion to connect with other Solo PER professionals and learn what is being done to help our/your endeavors. As in the past, bring questions, ideas and professional concerns to share. Consider joining the Solo PER group at PERcentral ahead of the meeting for occasional updates (https://www.compadre.org/per/programs/). Also, you can join in on live conversations using our Discord server (https://discord.gg/5fADGZr).
  • Student Topical Discussion and Social  

      • Student Topical Discussion and Social
      • STPAR-3
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Constance Doty
      • Type: Topical
      • This session is the primary opportunity for student members of the PER community to meet and discuss common issues. While this session is aimed toward graduate students, we welcome undergraduates who are interested in studying PER or curious about life as a graduate student!
  • TA Training and Innovations to Make Introductory Labs Work  

      • Roleplaying in GTA Preparation: Microteaching and Lab Simulation
      • PAR-A.09
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Emily Alicea-Munoz
      • Type: Invited
      • First-time graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) are usually nervous about their first teaching assignment. They worry about knowing the material well enough to teach it, they worry about public speaking and getting respect from their students, and they worry about potentially malfunctioning lab equipment, among many other concerns. Since "practice makes perfect," it makes sense to provide GTAs with the opportunity to practice before their teaching duties begin. In this talk, I describe two such activities that are part of the GTA Preparation class in the School of Physics at Georgia Tech. These activities allow the GTAs to take turns performing as teacher/facilitator and as students, providing them with an idea of what to expect in their classrooms. Course assessments over the past several years have shown that GTAs consider these activities to be very useful in preparing them and increasing their teaching self-efficacy.
      • Creating supplemental teaching material for teaching assistants
      • PAR-A.09
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Darsa Donelan
      • Type: Invited
      • There are as many ways to go about instructing a lab as there are teaching assistants. What we hope for our TAs to gain as lab instructors is to come into their own identity as teachers and the ability to effectively communicate scientific work. In this presentation, I will discuss material I have implemented to provide TAs the opportunity to practice their teaching skills while also benefiting from their teaching experience. One project was creating an instructor's guide to laboratories written by former TAs. Written as a refresher for TAs who already have familiarity with the laboratory course, the primary goal is to save them time and effort so that they can focus on the matter at hand: helping the students take as much as they can from the course. I will also discuss the use of supplemental videos that allow TAs and students to visualize portions of the lab.
      • Impact of Practice in a Mixed-reality Classroom Simulator on GTAs’ Questioning Strategies
      • PAR-A.09
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Constance Doty, Tong Wan, Ashley Geraets, Erin Saitta, Jacquelyn Chini

      • Type: Invited
      • In this study, we investigated the impact of practicing with questioning strategies in a mixed-reality classroom simulator on GTA use of questioning both in the simulator and in their actual classroom. During the simulator training, GTAs were in a physical classroom interacting with five avatar-students on a computer monitor. Throughout the fall 2019 semester, GTAs participated in four practice sessions, which were video-recorded. GTAs were tasked with practicing specific teaching skills, and one of the sessions focused on questioning strategies. In each session, GTAs were given two 7-minute opportunities; feedback and reflection time were provided after each 7-minute practice. In addition, GTAs were observed three to four times throughout the semester in their actual classroom. Here, we report frequencies and discuss examples of questioning strategies implemented by GTAs in the simulator and in their classroom. The results suggest that the simulator training supports GTAs’ implementation of questioning strategies.
      • GTA Training: Promoting Inclusive Environments and Students’ Sense of Belonging
      • PAR-A.09
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Caitlin Kepple, Kim Coble

      • Type: Invited
      • The Physics and Astronomy Department at San Francisco State University has recently implemented a pedagogical training course for incoming graduate teaching assistants (GTAs). Using student surveys, we investigate various contributors to students’ sense of belonging and compare to testimonies from GTAs (in the form of surveys and interviews) about how they attempt to foster a sense of belonging for their students in lab. We find similar emergent themes in both student and GTA data. After implementing the training course, we found that GTAs were able to cite both a wider range and higher number of pedagogical techniques to create an inclusive classroom. We also found that the testimonies of GTAs who took the pedagogy course were more closely aligned with that of their students’ about how to promote a sense of belonging in lab.
  • TYC Meet-up  

      • TYC Meet-up
      • STPAR-6
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Glenda Denicola
      • Type: Event
  • Teaching Equity in Physics  

      • Inclusive Physics & Astronomy Discussions at Western Washington University
      • PAR-F.10
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jess Mollerup, Dimitri Dounas-Frazer

      • Type: Invited
      • In spring 2019, the Physics & Astronomy Department at Western Washington University began hosting weekly discussions about (in)equity. The main goals are to provide opportunities for students, staff, and faculty to develop a common vocabulary and shared knowledge about issues of (in)equity, and to explore how these issues manifest in our field. During these discussions, we learned about allegories for race and racism, models of oppression, characteristics of white supremacy culture, technical/social dualism, white fragility, white saviorism, invisible disabilities, microaggressions, physics metaphors for gender and sexuality, and the scope and limits of physics ways of knowing. The co-facilitators are a white male physics professor and a white nonbinary student, and the Physics & Astronomy Department is predominantly white and male. This talk will provide an overview of the background, purpose, guiding principles, content, and the experience of participants as conveyed through feedback surveys to be administered in the spring.
      • What Parts of Ourselves Belong in a Physics Class?
      • PAR-F.10
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Vashti Sawtelle, Abigail Daane

      • Type: Invited
      • Teachers of introductory physics spend a significant amount of time figuring out how to structure our classes to be inviting to many different students. One thing to consider is the culture of our classrooms and the physics community they represent. In this presentation, we offer a pathway to position activities in our classrooms as doing feminist science, thus inviting more students to see their ways of knowing and learning as part of our classrooms. We describe a lesson plan that supports students and instructors in reflecting on the problematic norms of physics culture. We aim to provide a foothold for identifying the stereotypical masculine and feminine elements of common classroom science lessons. We then describe a series of activities that support students in seeing different parts of themselves in the physics classroom and identifying how activities might privilege some identities and disempower others.
      • Towards a multimodal semiotic approach in teaching physics
      • PAR-F.10
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Johan Tabora, Maria Varelas

      • Type: Invited
      • Teaching physics using a multimodal semiotic approach provides students with various opportunities to construct, represent, and communicate their developing understandings of physics concepts. Physics education research has shown that using multiple representations for problem-solving can enhance student learning. This talk extends the idea of multiple representations by arguing that engaging students in various semiotic modes such as speech, written text, gestures, images, and body positioning and movement not only enhances student physics understandings but also offers students different avenues of development and expression of their identities as physics learners that embrace their diverse sociocultural, racial, and ethnolinguistic backgrounds. Expanding our notion of what counts as valid physics representation provides a more equitable space for physics teaching and learning.
  • Technologies  

      • Visualizing Ddifferences in Simple Circuits Using a Computer Simulation
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jan-Philipp Burde, Arthur Kronenberger

      • Type: Poster
      • Understanding the basic concepts of electricity represents a major challenge to most students in K-12 education. In particular, most learners do not succeed in developing a robust understanding of potential and potential difference and instead tend to reason exclusively with current and resistance. These conceptual difficulties can be partly explained by the fact that potential differences cannot directly be perceived and are hence hard to imagine for students. To make potential differences and electric circuits in general more accessible to students, a new interactive computer simulation was developed. One of its key features is not only that any simple circuit can be simulated, but that it also supports different model representations of potential differences (e.g. a water flow model). On the poster, we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the different model representations from a PER perspective and highlight some of the features of the freely available simulation.
      • Teaching a blended course with TopHat
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Duffy
      • Type: Poster
      • TopHat is a platform known for in-class quizzing, with students using their phones to respond to questions. However, in our two-semester introductory algebra-based physics sequence, we are leveraging the TopHat platform to do significantly more than that. In addition to the in-class clicker feature, we are using TopHat for (1) pre-class preparation, with quizzes that include videos, content, and feedback from the students to the instructor; (2) online homework; (3) quizzes that are automatically graded; (4) an interactive e-book, with a significant number of embedded simulations. In this talk, I will provide some details about these four different uses, and show examples of each. The vast majority of the material we use was created by us, with a goal of making high-quality content available to the students for a reasonable cost.
      • PICUP: The Partnership for Integration of Computation into Undergraduate Physics
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Engelhardt Engelhardt, Danny Caballero, Marie Lopez del Peurto, Kelly Roos, Bob Hilborn

      • Type: Poster
      • We will provide an update on the status of “PICUP” the “Partnership for Integration of Computation into Undergraduate Physics”. This will include the growth of the PICUP community (of physics teachers like yourself), as well as the resources that PICUP has to offer you. This work is funded by the National Science Foundation under DUE IUSE grants 1524128, 1524493, 1524963, 1525062, and 1525525.
      • Teaching 3D Physics Concepts with Augmented Reality
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nick Giordano, Michele McColgan, Graziano Vernizzi

      • Type: Poster
      • Students find difficulty visualizing 3D concepts in our physics courses. In our introductory calculus-based physics and upper-level electricity and magnetism courses, students struggle to visualize electric and magnetic fields, electric flux, Gauss’s law, electromagnetic induction, three-dimensional integration, and the divergence theorem, to name a few of the E&M topics that are well suited for visualization using augmented reality. For example, when teaching Gauss’s law, the mathematical formalism tends to hide the geometrical meaning of Gauss’s law, more than explain it. Therefore, an AR hands-on visual representation can greatly help in rendering the concepts of flux through a surface or charge density in a given volume, so as to help students understand the physics behind it. In this poster presentation, we will demonstrate the AR applications and activities that we’ve developed and plan to use in our courses.
      • Teaching Introductory Physics Courses with Interactive Activities & Personalized Support
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Priya Jamkhedkar, Ralf Widenhorn, Theodore Stenmark, Chuck Faber, Misty Hamideh

      • Type: Poster
      • This poster summarizes the development of interactive courses with personalized support for algebra-based and calculus-based introductory physics courses taught at Portland State University. Teaching introductory physics courses to large classes with students with diverse skills in math, problem-solving, conceptual reasoning, and learning preferences is challenging. Providing interactive activities such as simulations, concept questions and problems with scaffolding questions along with support for students with different learning preferences and skill levels has the potential to promote active and engaged learning to have a long-lasting impact on the students’ educational experience. We conclude the poster with early results and insights for the future improvements to these courses.
      • Teaching Elementary School Teachers How To Teach Math and Science
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jennifer Kirkey
      • Type: Poster
      • The MSTE or Mathematics and Science Teaching Graduate Diploma is for working elementary or middle-school teachers. Designed to help teachers get comfortable with the new mathematics curriculum, rediscover chemistry, biology, physics and earth science and connect with other teachers in a positive and friendly environment. This poster will present the lessons learned from the four cohorts that have been offered at Douglas College, New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada. https://www.douglascollege.ca/programs-courses/catalogue/programs/PDMSCT This is one of the few programs of its type in Canada. This poster will present the lessons learned when science teachers work with teachers who have been working in their field for years. The program is offered in a hybrid format, so this poster will also highlight ways to connect with elementary school teachers in an online format.
      • Affordances and Strategies for Teaching introductory Circuits to Blind Children
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Dan MacIsaac, Kathleen Falconer, Manuela Welzel-Breuer, Pamela Detrois

      • Type: Poster
      • We describe affordances – simple modifications to equipment and procedures, and interventions for teaching an introductory lesson showing the classic one bulb in a circuit, two bulbs in series, then two in parallel sequence. Affordances for partially sighted, visually impaired students are straightforward, with slight but important adaptations to apparatus, lesson flow and timing. Affordances for profoundly blind students include using circuit representations on raised plastic or paper (swell paper) with and without Braille, and rigidly supported concrete circuits created with “Snap Circuits” TM apparatus. Given a second or two for thermal stabilization, sightless students can discriminate by touch between dark, partially lit and brightly lit incandescent sub-miniature bulbs for the traditional comparisons. We also discuss the need to establish trust and safety for blind children in handling simple circuit elements.
      • A simple determination of Planck's constant with a smartphone.
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Martín Monteiro
      • Type: Poster
      • In this work we propose a simple experiment with thermal radiation to analyze Planck's radiation law, that allows us to obtain an accurate value of Planck's constant. A tungsten filament bulb is used as a source of thermal radiation. The temperature of the filament is changed using a variable DC supply. By means of a voltmeter and an ammeter, the resistance of the filament is obtained and hence, its temperature. The intensity of the light emitted by the bulb is measured by the ambient light sensor of a smartphone. Thanks to the narrow spectral response of this sensor, a relationship between temperature and spectral radiance for a fixed frequency is obtained, which is in good agreement with Planck's law.
      • The smartphone as a hydrophone
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Martín Monteiro, Arturo Martí

      • Type: Poster
      • Several models of smartphones are currently submersible, and the performance of their microphones underwater is good enough to be used as true hydrophones capable of conducting physics experiments. A very elementary application of the hydrophone, suitable for a basic physics course, is to use it to determine the speed of sound in water. Here we present two related activities, one is to measure the speed of sound in water from the time difference of two signals and the speed of sound in air. The other problem-activity consists in determining the distance of a sound source from the delay between two signals, one that travels through the air and another that travels through the water.
      • Student Learning Outcomes with Hybrid Computer Simulations and Hands-On Labs
      • PS-A.09
      • Tue 07/21, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Sheila Sagear, Emily Allen, Manher Jariwala, Andrew Duffy

      • Type: Poster
      • Computer simulations for physics labs may be combined with hands-on lab equipment to boost student understanding and make labs more accessible. Hybrid labs of HTML5-based computer simulations and hands-on lab equipment for topics in mechanics were investigated in a large, algebra-based, studio physics course for life science students at a private, research-intensive institution. Computer simulations were combined with hands-on equipment and compared to traditional hands-on labs alone using an A/B testing protocol. Learning outcomes were measured for the specific topic of momentum conservation by comparing student scores on post-lab exercises, related quiz and exam questions, and a subset of questions on the Energy and Momentum Conceptual Survey (EMCS) administered before and after instruction for both groups. We will present our findings of this study in the context of previous work and discuss the larger implications of the use of simulations in physics education.
      • Treatment of Statistics and Error in Introductory Physics Lab Manuals
      • PAR-G.10
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jimmy Gonzalez, John Walkup

      • Type: Contributed
      • Many students experience their first practical application of statistics and error analysis in their introductory physics laboratory courses. The activities they conduct in their lab courses teach definitions, concepts, and skills in statistics and erroranalysis that they will use for the rest of their academic and postgraduate career. We analyze the use of statistical methods in college-level introductory physics laboratory courses by reviewing a sample of student lab manuals collected from two-year community colleges and four-year universities. Approaches to introducing statistical concepts and procedures are examined for consistency, with particular reference to national and international statistical guidelines such as the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the International Organization for Standardisation (ISO). Our analysis reveals a severe inconsistency in the treatment of statistics and error among the sampled lab manuals for courses aimed at science and engineering students.
      • Measurement Uncertainties
      • PAR-G.10
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Kris Lui
      • Type: Contributed
      • One aspect of data analysis that seems overlooked in introductory lab instruction is that of measurement uncertainties. Students have difficulty grasping the concept that measurements are not infinitely precise. In this talk, I will outline an activity and follow-up methods to instill the idea of measurement uncertainty in an introductory college-level lab setting.
      • The physics of a yoyo using a smartphone
      • PAR-G.10
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by MARTIN MONTEIRO, Isabel Salinas, Juan Antonio Monsoriu, Arturo Martí

      • Type: Contributed
      • The usage of toys to teach physics is an interesting approach to promote engagement and creativity. Traditionally, toys have been widely used in qualitative demonstrations. However, it is frequently difficult to extract quantitative results in physics experiments involving toys. One possible strategy to address this difficulty is the use of smartphone sensors. In this work we investigate the dynamics of a traditional toy, the yoyo, theoretically and experimentally, using smartphone’ sensors. In particular, using the gyroscope, the angular velocity was measured. The experimental results were complemented thanks to a digital video analysis. As the yoyo is a ubiquitous, simple and traditional toy this simple proposal could encourage students to experiment with everyday objects and modern technologies. More information: http://smarterphysics.blogspot.com/
      • Small force project for teaching statistical analysis in the lab 
      • PAR-G.10
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Nathan Powers, Robert Davis

      • Type: Contributed
      • Statistical analysis is one of the technical skills we are targeting in a newly developed project-based lab course. Students are asked to measure the smallest possible force using a strain gauge and to provide convincing evidence that the force has been detected. This goal extends over several class periods as students make revisions to improve their measurements and complete pre-lab readings and activities on statistical analysis methods. At the culmination of the module, students design and conduct an experiment that requires the measurement of a small force. They must use the statistical methods they have learned to support their findings. 
      • Remote Sensing Spectroscopy and Algae Concentration in the Finger Lakes
      • PAR-G.10
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by ileana dumitriu, peter spacher, john halfman, Lisa Cleckner

      • Type: Contributed
      • Harmful algae blooms (HABs) are a routine occurrence that compromise the many uses of the Finger Lakes. In-situ standard water quality testing to determine the presence of HABs in the lakes is often time consuming and expensive. The use of drones outfitted with spectrometers to detect HABs could prove to be a more cost effective and efficient practice. In the present study, reflectance spectra and water quality in situ parameters were measured at the same time and location during 2019 monthly water quality surveys of the eight eastern Finger Lakes. The reflectance spectra were measured over a wavelength range of 300 to 800 nm using a STS spectrometer recording both the down-welling and upwelling radiation and subsequently calculating the Up/Down ratio. Peak heights in the spectra were correlated to algae (chlorophyll-a) concentrations measured in the laboratory. Results of spectral analyses indicate that remote sensing reflectance spectroscopy complemented by in-situ data is an effective approach for monitoring HABs in the freshwater lakes.
  • The Art and Science of Teaching  

      • Fully Blended Online Course using Modeling Approach to Problem Solving
      • PAR-F.11
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by David Pritchard
      • Type: Invited
      • Blended learning with flipped classrooms – where online pre-class instruction precedes highly interactive classes - outperforms traditional pedagogy. It also challenges the organizational and cognitive load capabilities of instructors. Placing the required resources: videos, interleaved questions, in-class activities (short instructor presentations, group problems, and other activities), homework, and quizzes in a single online platform allows creating and organizing assignments to fit various weekly class schedules. I will describe an Introductory calculus-based Mechanics course using the Modeling Approach to Problem Solving pedagogy (1&2), emphasizing the online in-class activities. We use the edX platform to handle and deploy the resources, supplemented by an organizational software package that displays sufficient metadata to create and assess a balanced learning experience, and to improve outcomes year to year based on the collected metadata. We are grateful to MIT for help generating resources and making the organizational software package. Please consider adapting this course for your students.
      • The Basic Science of Teaching to Improve Practice and Outcomes
      • PAR-F.11
      • Tue 07/21, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Gay Stewart, John Stewart

      • Type: Invited
      • Physics education is full of instances of those who have abandoned reforms because they did not seem to work. Surprise: A talk or even a workshop is not enough to provide instructors deep conceptual understanding of how students learn physics! Courses are complicated systems that must be well designed to provide the best learning experience possible and significant learning can take place in many different types of courses. The science of teaching begins with understanding what student behaviors lead to learning. Many of the elements behind effective reformed courses have the same student behavior goal. Focusing on these goals may help faculty implement effective reformed instruction. I will present some of these important behaviors. Getting students to engage in them leads to improved learning. The art comes in with the question: Can we get the students to like it?
  • Tools for Data Analysis  

      • Developing Data Analysis Skills with Simple, Common Experiments
      • PAR-C.11
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Paul Arpin
      • Type: Invited
      • In our Advanced Laboratory course students develop practical data analysis skills working through two simple experiments early in the semester that we then revisit throughout the course. For most of the semester, students rotate through different experiments. Having these two common experiments enables all students to practice specific data analysis and error analysis techniques on their own measured data at appropriate times during the semester. For example, students calculate the wavelength of a laser from the glancing incidence diffraction pattern from a machinist’s ruler. They gradually refine the estimates of the wavelength and the corresponding uncertainty. In this talk, I will describe the two experiments and how we use them to teach data analysis and error analysis throughout the semester.
      • Computation and Experimentation as Equal Partners in Undergraduate Lab Education
      • PAR-C.11
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Martha-Elizabeth Baylor, Jay Tasson

      • Type: Invited
      • In the undergraduate lab experience, computation and experimentation are typically presented as distinct lab experiences. This approach ignores the important interplay that can exist between these two different ways of understanding the physical world. At Carleton College, we developed one two-week lab that treats computation and experimentation as interconnected, equal partners in students’ understanding of the natural world. I will discuss this lab that focuses on finding the half-lives of two simultaneously decaying isotopes and discuss how we encourage students to think about the interplay between computation and experimentation. Additionally, I will discuss efforts to promote lab skill development and inclusion broadly in this sophomore-level lab course and particularly how these inclusion efforts are manifested in the lab I will present in this talk.
      • Enhancing Computational Instruction for Physics Majors: Developing Tools for Assessment
      • PAR-C.11
      • Mon 07/20, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Kendra Letchworth-Weaver, Harold Butner, Keigo Fukumura, Gabriel Niculescu, Klebert Feitosa

      • Type: Invited
      • Computer programming is an essential skill for physics majors seeking employment in a highly technological world. The advent of “big data” in business, engineering, and traditional STEM fields requires graduates proficient in data acquisition, storage, manipulation, and analysis. Physics departments are responding to this trend by integrating computational instruction into their undergraduate programs, but questions remain regarding the effectiveness of this training. In the Department of Physics and Astronomy at James Madison University, we have developed a set of learning objectives related to computational skills and integrated these objectives throughout our curriculum, primarily in laboratory courses. Our team has also developed an assessment tool, consisting of multiple choice and free response questions, that can quantitatively measure students’ computational skills within the context of physics. This presentation will discuss both the successes and challenges we encountered as we seek to enhance computational instruction and evaluate student learning improvement in our department.
  • Tools for Teaching Computation in Physics  

      • Navigating computational thinking practices for high school physics curricula
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Theodore Bott, Daniel Weller, Paul Irving, Marcos Caballero

      • Type: Poster
      • Within the last 15 years, computational thinking (CT) has emerged as a focal point of K-12 education. Numerous frameworks have outlined the practices involved when students and teachers engage in CT. These frameworks discuss how CT practices should be understood, implemented, and assessed in the classroom. While curricular expectations around this topic are becoming clearer, teachers (especially high school STEM instructors) still express a significant need for assessment strategies in the classroom. In light of this, we have begun to develop an assessment that will measure high school and early college instructors’ perspectives on CT practices. Currently, we are constructing an open-ended pilot survey that will help us understand which practices are relevant to teachers and how familiar teachers are with these practices. Once we have identified the CT practices that teachers are interested in evaluating, we will move to the next step of the assessment development: creating an open-ended free-response questionnaire to administer to students.
      • The Friendly Command Line: Computational Physics on the Unix Shell
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Walter Freeman
      • Type: Invited
      • Often the skills required to use the Unix/Linux command line are perceived as old-fashioned, difficult to learn, and unnecessary. However, the Linux command line is an extraordinarily flexible environment for programming, data reduction and analysis, simulation, and visualization, and is thus in wide use throughout the physics research community and beyond. These skills are surprisingly accessible to students. In this talk, I will argue that the command-line environment is a pedagogically beneficial environment for students to learn computational physics, with advantages both within the classroom and beyond it, and demonstrate some of the tools and methods the computational physics students at Syracuse use for simulation, visualization, animation, and data analysis.
      • Accessible Computation: Teaching Computation In Physics Through Browser-Based Platforms
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Merideth Frey
      • Type: Poster
      • Computational skills are a necessity in the modern workforce. However, determining how to teach these skills in a way that can be easily accessible for all students is a daunting challenge. As a one-person physics department in a small, liberal arts institution, I have aimed to build up the physics curriculum with an emphasis on transferrable experimental and computational skills, all while being accessible to as many students as possible. This work includes computation-based introductory physics laboratories, computational assignments in a non-major course on chaos, and computational essays in an intermediate lab-based class on resonance. Each course primarily uses a different browser-based platform (spreadsheets, Glowscript, Google Colaboratory) that was chosen for its accessibility and ease-of-use. I will discuss the various successes and challenges I have encountered teaching with these different computational tools, and I look forward to receiving feedback and ideas for future iterations of this ongoing project.
      • The Opportunities and Challenges of Minimally Working Programs
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by W. Brian Lane
      • Type: Invited
      • When assigning a computational activity, it's a common best practice for physics educators to provide students with a minimally working program (MWP) that the students modify, rather than asking them to code from scratch. On-line coding platforms such asGlowScript and Trinket make it easy to deploy MWPs and for students to share their completed work. I’ll discuss how we can supplement this best practice with pre-class video tutorials about our MWPs and outline a process for scaffolding student learning using MWPs. I’ll also describe some challenges one can encounter with MWPs (such as, “Do students really learn how the MWP works?” “Do skills and understanding really carry over from one activity to the next?”) and open the floor for discussion about how we might address those challenges.
      • Impact of learning assistants on problem solving in computational thinking
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Bahar Modir, Macon Magno, Robynne Lock, William Newton

      • Type: Invited
      • In Fall 2019, we started to implement the learning assistant program into our middle division physics courses at Texas A&M University-Commerce. As part of this effort, we have implemented the learning assistant program for the first time to our computational physics course. The class time is a combination of lecture and group problem solving. We will analyze the interactions between the learning assistant-student, student-student and student-instructor. To investigate, we have recorded the student group work during coding to find the effect of a learning-assisted classroom on students computational thinking and the role of learning assistants in nudging students towards more productive approaches.
      • Simulated Annealing with the POV-RAY ray-tracing program: Photo-realistic crystal growth
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by John Walkup
      • Type: Poster
      • The Persistence of Vision Raytracer (POV-Ray) is a free software tool for creating photo-realistic, three-dimensional graphics. Using a simple -- albeit capable -- programming syntax, POV-ray offers a fun way for students to develop basic programming skills such as the use of random number generation, variable declarations, conditional statements, and loop structures. In this presentation, the presenter will describe how the animation capability of POV-ray can model Monte Carlo techniques such as Markov chains and the Metropolis algorithm to simulate the annealing process fundamental to crystal growth.
      • Computational Toolkits in Quantum Mechanics
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jay Wang, Trevor Robertson

      • Type: Poster
      • Computation has much to offer in terms of teaching quantum mechanics. In this presentation we give specific examples of use of computation in quantum mechanical problems. We also discuss standard toolkits either well-known, used in research or found in software libraries, and not-so-standard tools one can implement themselves. Examples utilizing numerical and visualization techniques for solving time-dependent and time-independent quantum systems will be discussed (see also http://www.faculty.umassd.edu/j.wang/) including superposition, scattering flux, eigenstates in periodic structures, evolution of uncertainties, and quantum dots.
      • Video Analysis of Variation in Computational Thinking Practices in Physics
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Daniel Weller, Marcos Caballero, Paul Irving

      • Type: Poster
      • Computational thinking has been emphasized as a main science and engineering practice in the Next Generation Science Standards. However, learning objectives outlined by the standards are written in vague terms that complicate the implementation and assessment of this topic in the classroom. This is especially problematic for high school teachers who have limited experience with computation and are looking to integrate computational modeling in their physics or physical science classrooms. In this study, we explore the variation in computational thinking practices that physics students demonstrate when working through in-class coding activities. Video data of multiple student groups were collected in one high school teacher’s physics and physical science classrooms. The data was analyzed to create a codebook that describes the different ways students engage in computational thinking practices. Ultimately, this work will help practitioners better understand how to identify these practices in a high school physics setting.
      • Cloud-based Tools and Software for Integrating Computation into a Physics Curriculum
      • PAR-D.10
      • Mon 07/20, 2:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jason Ybarra
      • Type: Invited
      • I will present an overview of some of the cloud-based tools and software to facilitate integration of computation into a physics curriculum. These tools allow students to do computational work without having to install and configure software on their personal computers. The ability to share their code in real-time with classmates allows for collaborative learning, and sharing with the instructor provides an avenue for fast feedback. Examples of assignments using cloud-based tools will be presented.
  • Transforming Physics Curricula to Include Computation  

      • Save the Earth: A Mechanics Thread That Introduces Computation
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Michael Burns-Kaurin
      • Type: Poster
      • I used the thread of saving the Earth from a collision with an asteroid to introduce several concepts in mechanics. Through successive approximations to the situation, students analyze situations involving constant velocity, conservation of momentum, constant acceleration, and kinetic energy as they try to determine how best to deflect the asteroid. The tools used include computer programming with the motivation of performing computations iteratively to determine closest approach
      • Implementing and assessing computation across the curriculum at IUPUI
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Andrew Gavrin, Yogesh Joglekar, Gautam Vemuri

      • Type: Poster
      • Our goal as a department, set three years ago, is to “make computation normal.” That is, our students should consider computation to be a “normal” approach to problem solving, not a special method for a few distinct classes of problems. To this end, we are on track to having approximately 25% of all assignments be computational by 2023. This talk will describe our efforts to date, with particular attention to the development of a first assessment tool and early results from its use.
      • Threading Computation into the Physics Curriculum at Lewis University
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ryan Hooper
      • Type: Invited
      • Heavily motivated by the 2016 AAPT Undergraduate Curriculum Task Force Report, the Physics Department at Lewis University in Romeoville, IL revised its curriculum to include more computational skills throughout. This talk will address how Lewis embeds computational components into the core curriculum as student learning outcomes with College and University wide acceptance. The dual environment model used by Lewis, which emphasizes VPython and Maple, will be articulated. An outline of the curriculum and examples of how the model is executed will be presented along with anecdotal evidence of success. Finally, the talk will describe how Lewis strives to empower educators in the Chicagoland area to enhance their curriculum with computational skill sets.
      • Application of Secondary Physics Content through Modeling of Geoscience Data
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Susan Meabh Kelly
      • Type: Poster
      • Public access to archived geoscience databases and open source software programs provide opportunities for students to apply and expand conventional high school physics content in new contexts. These experiences invite opportunity for original science research projects that require nothing more than a computer with an internet connection. Examples from multiple geoscience fields of study will be outlined, with a focus on students' use of computation.
      • A Portfolio of Data Analytics Classes at University of Oklahoma
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Karen Leighly, Collin Dabbieri, Alexander Kerr, Donald Terndrup

      • Type: Poster
      • We present the design and initial implementation of two data-driven Astronomy courses at the University of Oklahoma. Both courses focus on data analytics skills acquisition using the Python coding language and Jupyter notebooks, and are aimed at providing students with experiences and skills for a wide range of careers. Astronomy 3190 is a elective course for sophomores. The emphasis is on repeated exposure to the data life cycle: data wrangling, visualization, statistical thinking, modeling, computational thinking, and communication skills. Astronomy 5900 is a graduate course taken by upper-division undergraduates and graduate students. The course provides an ambitious romp through statistical inference, Markov Chain Monte Carlo, cluster analysis, regression, principal components analysis, classification, and time series. Both courses use freely available astronomical data from various sources including the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. A discussion of the learning goals and examples of specific activities will be included.
      • Professional Development Pathways to Integrate Computing in Physics First
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Colleen Megowan Romanowicz, Rebecca Vieyra, Shriram Krishnamurthi, Kathi Fisler

      • Type: Poster
      • This poster presents an overview of an NSF-funded program to integrate Modeling Instruction for physics with Bootstrap for Algebra into Physics First courses. The program included a teacher-led developmental stage across two years, followed by a dissemination stage of three years that included 2-3 weeks of face-to-face workshops for some teachers, and a semester-long synchronous online course for others. This poster will include major program outcomes and design details, as well as reflections on essential elements for effective professional development in physics that integrates computing. Learn more about this project at https://aapt.org/K12/Computational-Modeling-in-Physics-First.cfm
      • Computational Physics at Weber State University: Successes and Excuses
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Daniel Schroeder
      • Type: Invited
      • Weber State University is an open-enrollment commuter school where each year about 300 students take the first semester of calculus-based introductory physics, while about 10 students receive physics bachelor's degrees. We have successfully put quite a bit of computation into the curriculum for the latter group, but not for the former. In this talk I will describe some of the computational pieces in our curriculum for physics majors, including a sophomore-level scientific computing course, microcontroller programming in our electronics course, and integration of numerical approaches into some of our core theory courses. I will also offer our excuses for not making computation a significant part of the introductory course.
      • A Portfolio of Data Analytics Classes at Ohio State University
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Donald Terndrup, Em Sowles, Emily Griffith, Karen Leighly

      • Type: Poster
      • We present the design and initial implementation of two data-driven Astronomy courses at Ohio State. Both courses teach fundamental astrophysical and statistical concepts using the Python coding language. Astronomy 1221 is a general-education course for first-year students, about half of whom are majors in Astronomy and Astrophysics. Astronomy 3350 is a majors course for 3rd-year students. We review the main features of these courses and how they prepare students for sophomore- and senior-level astrophysics classes and for starting research in data-intensive projects. Especially in the first-year course, the design is intended to improve retention of female students, who leave the major more often than do male students despite having higher grades in their physics and math courses. Finally, we discuss how Astronomy 1221 will fit into a new general-education scheme at OSU, which will roll out starting in the 2021-2022 academic year.
      • Program-level Scaffolding of Computation in Physics Curricula
      • PAR-E.07
      • Tue 07/21, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Jason Ybarra
      • Type: Poster
      • We discuss integration of computation at the program level to provide students with a solid foundation in programming and the ability to transfer these skills to multiple programming languages. The success of this program depends on scaffolding throughout the curriculum, with students taking courses that introduce computation in their first two years before they reach upper-level physics. We include examples of how computational skills learned in lower-level courses lead to more advanced computational assignments in upper-level courses.
  • Undergraduate Meet-up  

      • Undergraduate Meet-up
      • STPAR-5
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Brad Conrad
      • Type: Event
  • Upper Division and Graduate  

      • An Application of the Physics of Viral Diffusion: COVID-19
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Keith Andrew, Kristopher Andrew, Eric Steinfelds, Karla Andrew

      • Type: Poster
      • With the impact caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, students have asked if their expertise as physics majors could be used to help understand and play a societal role in looking at the virus’s impact. We explored a well-known coupled diffusion model to examine viral spread, exposure, infection, and recovery. We introduced time dependent spreading and diffusion terms that required the students to look at local data to determine parameters related to regional lockdown time, spreading rate with and without lockdown, social distancing, fraction and cultural impact for respect for obeying social distancing, diffusion constants for motorized travel, building activity and pedestrian travel, fractal dimension and anomalous diffusion. For a fixed point the system of PDEs become ODEs and when linearized near an equilibrium point the eigenvalues give a simplified algebraic expression for the reproduction number R, and herd immunity function H, to determine if the spreading is contained.
      • Exploring Graduate Students' Understanding of Entropy
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nate Crossette, Michael Vignal, Bethany Wilcox

      • Type: Poster
      • As a first step in a larger study of student difficulties in upper-division thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, we present the results of think-aloud interviews with graduate students on a set of entropy related questions. The four interview questions were developed to probe student understanding of entropy as a pressure towards equilibrium, as a quantity maximized in equilibrium, as a connection between microstates and macrostates, and as a macroscopic state-function. Exploring graduate students' understanding entropy and their ability to solve problems and reason with entropic arguments will provide insights into how physicists develop a mature understanding of entropy as a physical quantity. Specifically, we hope to see if new conceptual difficulties emerge as students progress to graduate school, and whether difficulties seen in undergraduate courses persist, evolve, or cease to present issues in the graduate setting.
      • Assessing Scientific Practices in an Upper-Division Thermal Physics Course
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Amali Priyanka Jambuge, Katherine Rainey, Bethany Wilcox, James Laverty

      • Type: Poster
      • Blending Scientific Practices with Core Ideas and Crosscutting Concepts (aka three-dimensional learning) as emphasized in K-12 Framework for Science Education opens up the broader scientific community’s attention to bring those ideas into college courses. While these ideas are sometimes implemented in college-level classrooms as important aspects of students’ learning, aligning the assessments also plays a vital role in evaluating students’ understanding. Upper-division assessments largely evaluate students’ understanding of conceptual knowledge in physics. However, courses similar to thermal physics that have closer proximity to real-world applications provide an avenue to explore how students intertwine their knowledge with practices. In this poster, we examine students’ responses to assessment tasks developed to elicit students’ abilities in blending Scientific Practices with Core Ideas (along with Crosscutting concepts) in an upper-division thermal physics course. This work addresses modifying upper-division college-physics assessments to align with three-dimensional learning.
      • Confessions of a Spark Plug - Sparking Children's Imagination
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jennifer Kirkey
      • Type: Poster
      • Confessions of a Spark Plug - Sparking Children's Imagination. Thirty years of science outreach in Kindergarten to Grade Three age range has allowed me to workshop hands-on activities that manage to spark the imagination of this group, while helping to start them down the path of experimental science. A tribute to the biggest spark plug - Peter Hopkinson of the BC AAPT. This poster will present the details of what works well in my most requested presentation. Force and motion using magnets and static electricity also know as "start with a balloon". Having presented this online five times in the months of April - May - June, I will also share some tips on how to Zoom this particular topic.
      • Developing and Evaluating Quantum Mechanics Formalism and Postulates Survey
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Emily Marshman, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Poster
      • Development of multiple-choice tests related to a particular physics topic is important for designing research-based learning tools to reduce the difficulties related to the topic. We explore the difficulties that the advanced undergraduate and graduate students have with quantum mechanics formalism and postulates. We developed a research-based multiple-choice survey that targets these issues to obtain information about the common difficulties and administered it to undergraduate and graduate students. We find that the advanced undergraduate and graduate students have many common difficulties with these topics. The survey can be administered to assess the effectiveness of various instructional strategies. This work is supported by the National Science Foundation.
      • Addressing Scientific Practices with Upper-Division Physics Assessment Items
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Katherine Rainey, Amali Jambuge, James Laverty, Bethany Wilcox

      • Type: Poster
      • With the introduction of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in 2013, three dimensions of science learning have taken the forefront in K-12 science education: core ideas, crosscutting concepts, and scientific and engineering practices. In more recent years, researchers and educators have considered the integration of these NGSS ideas at the college level. With these three components of learning being of equal importance in these standards, it must also follow that they are equally prioritized within assessment. Scientific practices in particular can be challenging to address in assessment, as they describe what scientists actually do when they investigate the natural world (e.g., construct explanations). How can scientific practices be integrated into an upper-division college assessment that can be widely implemented and easily graded? In this presentation, we describe an initial effort in creating assessment items that address scientific practices for upper-division thermal physics students in a coupled, multiple response format.
      • Qualitative Analysis of Students’ Epistemic Framing Surrounding Instructor’s Interaction.
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Amogh Sirnoorkar, Christopher Hass, Qing Ryan, Alana Uriarte

      • Type: Poster
      • As part of a larger study into students solving upper division problems in small groups, we investigated how instructors influence students’ epistemic framing in an upper-division electromagnetism class. While existing literature indicates that instructors can influence student’s epistemic framing, we are interested in the mechanisms by which that influence occurs. We use the CAMP (Conceptual, Algorithmic, Mathematics and Physics) frames in investigating dynamics of students’ frames surrounding the instructor’s interaction, tracking frame triplets before, during, and after instructor’s intervention during tutorial sessions. We identify instructor behaviors which support students’ frames and behaviors which tip them into new frames, and show how the instructor’s supporting and tipping behaviors change over the course of the semester.
      • Calculating Scientific Jargon*
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Shannon Willoughby, Bryce Hughes, Jenny Green, Kent Davis, Leila Sterman

      • Type: Poster
      • When writing scientific content for a lay audience, the author must take care to limit the amount of jargon that is used, so that the message is understandable. Because it can be difficult to determine what words are jargon, we have developed an R scriptthat calculates the amount of jargon in a given piece of text. The script outputs a list of words that are likely scientific jargon, and creates a word cloud to display which words are used the most. The calculated value of jargon can be compared to benchmarked texts in order to gauge the overall difficulty versus that of ArXiv papers, classic texts, MSD sheets, abstracts of active NSF grants, and more. Frequently used jargon can be replaced or defined in order to increase readability. The R script can be downloaded from our website and can be used freely.
      • The Physics GRE does not help “overlooked” applicants
      • PS-B.11
      • Wed 07/22, 12:30PM - 1:30PM (EDT)

      • by Nicholas Young, Marcos Caballero

      • Type: Poster
      • One argument for keeping the physics GRE is that it can help applicants who might otherwise be missed in the admissions process stand out. In this work, we evaluate whether this claim is supported by physics graduate school admissions decisions. We used admissions data from five PhD-granting physics departments over a 2-year period to see how the fraction of applicants admitted varied based on their physics GRE scores. We compared applicants with low GPAs to applicants with higher GPAs and applicants from large undergraduate universities to applicants from smaller undergraduate universities. We find that for applicants who might otherwise have been missed (e.g. have a low GPA or attended a small school) having a high physics GRE score did not seem to increase the applicant’s chances of being admitted to the schools. However, having a low physics GRE score seemed to penalize otherwise competitive applicants.
  • Upper Division/Graduate Courses  

      • Demonstration to Show Resonant Oscillations of a Simple Pendulum
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by D. Baker
      • Type: Contributed
      • One of the ubiquitous problems in classical mechanics is that of a simple pendulum attached to a support that oscillates in time. Under certain conditions, such a pendulum can be modeled as a driven harmonic oscillator, and, as a result, the pendulum canundergo large-amplitude oscillations when the driving frequency of the oscillating support matches the natural frequency of the pendulum. To accompany analysis of this problem in mechanics courses, a simple apparatus has been built to model the system described above. The apparatus will be presented, along with a Lagrangian mechanics analysis of the motion. In addition, several other applications of the demonstration will be discussed.
      • Strategies for the Math Physics Course at TLU
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Calvin Berggren
      • Type: Contributed
      • A course in mathematical methods for physics is a valuable course in many physics departments to build a bridge between introductory courses and demanding upper-division courses, yet there are a number of challenges in successfully implementing such a course. After designing a math physics course from scratch and refining it over the last six years, I will discuss strategies for the course relating to content coverage, level of rigor, grading scheme, textbook selection, integration of conceptual thinking, and use of software.
      • A New Assessment Approach that Models Legitimate Practice
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by David Donnelly
      • Type: Contributed
      • The author modified his assessment methods in upper division and graduate courses to better align professional physicists. Instead of using timed tests, students took one written test, gave one oral presentation, and submitted one written report. The courses in which this was implemented will be discussed, along with management issues encountered, details of the assessments, and student feedback.
      • Preparing for the quantum revolution - the role of higher education
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Michael Fox, Benjamin Zwickl, Heather Lewandowski

      • Type: Contributed
      • Since the passing of the National Quantum Initiative Act in December 2018, there has been great interest from business, academia, and the general public in the quantum industry. Faculty at higher-education institutes, mainly in physics, engineering, and computer science departments have been struggling with the question of how to adapt their courses to meet the demands of students interested in this exciting new field, ensuring that the content delivered would be relevant to possible future careers, whilst also maintaining academic relevance. Results from an interview study of 21 companies in the quantum industry will be presented, illustrating the skills and knowledge present in the workforce of the quantum industry; how those skills and knowledge relate to existing courses and training; and where there are opportunities for new and innovative course development.
      • Astronomical Spectroscopy for Upper-Division Labs
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Savannah Lyons*, Christopher Nakamura, Joseph Bruessow

      • Type: Contributed
      • Upper-division lab courses typically focus on modern physics ideas. The experiments usually address topics in atomic, molecular, optical and solid-state physics well. However, they often lack astronomy/astrophysics experiments, particularly at institutions without dedicated on-campus observatories. These subfields are of significant interest to students, and continue to be important areas of research, so relevant labs are desirable. In this project, we explored astronomical spectroscopy measurement with the aim of incorporating it into an upper-division laboratory curriculum. The focus was on inexpensive, portable equipment. Our primary interest was in measuring the red shift of highly red-shifted quasars, which are of interest in cosmology, particularly with respect to measuring the Hubble constant. Additionally, we have measured stellar spectra, primarily as a means of calibration, but also to explore the possibility of connecting to stellar astrophysics. In this talk we present results of these investigations and discuss possibilities for implementation.
      • Improving Student Understanding Of Dirac Notation by Using Analogical Reasoning in the Context of a Three-Dimensional Vector Space

      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Emily Marshman, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • We discuss an investigation of student difficulties with Dirac notation in the context of a three-dimensional vector space and the validation and evaluation of a Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) to improve student understanding of these concepts. We find that many upper-level undergraduate students in quantum mechanics courses have difficulties with Dirac notation even in the context of a three-dimensional vector space after traditional instruction. The QuILT uses analogical reasoning and builds on students’ prior knowledge of three-dimensional vectors in the familiar context of introductory mechanics to help students build a coherent understanding of Dirac notation in three dimensions before transitioning to the quantum mechanical context. We summarize the development of the QuILT and findings from its evaluations. We thank the National Science Foundation for support.
      • Advanced Students’ and Faculty Members’ Reasoning about the Double-slit Experiment with Single Particles

      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Ryan Sayer, Alexandru Maries, Chandralekha Singh

      • Type: Contributed
      • We describe an investigation focusing on advanced students’ and faculty members’ understanding and reasoning about two questions related to the double-slit experiment with single particles. One of the questions posed was a standard double-slit question while the other question was more speculative. First, undergraduate and graduate students in advanced quantum mechanics courses were asked the questions in written form, and six students were interviewed individually using a think-aloud protocol in which they were asked follow-up questions to make their thought processes explicit regarding their responses to the questions. We also interviewed five faculty members who had taught modern physics, quantum mechanics and/or solid-state physics to understand their reasoning and thought processes. All faculty members provided thoughtful responses to the more speculative question related to the double-slit experiment with single particles, which shed light on what it means to think like a physicist. Student responses varied greatly in their correctness and sophistication of reasoning, suggesting that while some advanced undergraduate and graduate students had begun to think like a physicist in the challenging quantum mechanical contexts of the problems posed, others needed additional guidance and scaffolding support in order to develop expert-like reasoning skills.
      • What Is 'Parametric Drive' of a Simple Harmonic Oscillator?
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by David Van Baak
      • Type: Contributed
      • Students know that a simple harmonic oscillator (SHO) has a ‘resonance curve’, and some students even know how to label the axes of a plot showing that resonance curve. The frequency (and amplitude) of a sinusoidal drive force are the main independent variables, and the steady-state amplitude of the SHO’s response is the main dependent variable. But a simple modification to a mechanical SHO can change it from ‘direct drive’ to ‘parametric drive’, and this subtle change has dramatic consequences. First of all, parametric resonance occurs when the drive frequency is not at the SHO’s natural frequency, but nearly "double" that frequency. Next, there no longer emerges any steady-state amplitude of response, and the right dependent variable to measure is the rate of "exponential growth" (or decay) of the system’s oscillations. There is also a "threshold amplitude" for the drive required to give any growth in the response. This presentation features a torsional SHO with a non-contact parametric drive, and shows theoretical predictions and experimental data for its performance. Finally, we connect this parametric drive of a mechanical SHO to some glamorous applications of parametric excitation in modern physics.
      • Micropattern Gas Detectors for Advanced Physics Laboratories
      • PAR-G.11
      • Wed 07/22, 10:00AM - 11:00AM (EDT)

      • by Shawn Zaleski, Kerstin Hoepfner

      • Type: Contributed
      • Micropattern gas detectors (MPGDs), of which gas electron multipliers (GEMs) are a class, are a recent technology meeting today’s higher requirements of both spatial and temporal resolution in high energy physics, as well as medical applications. GEM chamber performance depends on many different parameters such as gain, gas tightness, high voltage (HV) response and noise. The gain is a key parameter, a measure of the chamber’s ability to amplify an electronic signal from ionizing particles passing through the chamber’s gas volume. Students in the RWTH Aachen University advanced physics lab studied the effect on gain while varying gas mixture and HV, as well the incoming particle rate. This experiment allows the instructor to cater to diverse set of applications and student interest. Student feedback will be presented.
  • Using the Effective Practices for Physics Programs (EP3) Guide and its online communities to improve, review, and assess your department  

      • Serving as an External Consultant for a Departmental Review
      • PAR-B.09
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Neal Abraham
      • Type: Invited
      • Periodic review by a department of its programs can be a rewarding opportunity for reflection, evaluation, and improvement; assisting a department with its review as an external consultant is also rewarding. This presentation will review how to find these rewards with a specific focus on the advantages to departments of using external consultants and suggestions for consultants on how they can be most effective. The advantages of a departmental review lie in taking a systematic approach that includes gathering relevant data on a regular basis, assessing the data regularly, and regularly assessing and revising departmental initiatives designed to achieve desired improvements. Though the detailed planning and development of strategic initiatives are the responsibilities of the department and its institution, external consultants can help a department pay closer attention to trends in their data and outcomes, ask critical questions that may have been overlooked, and direct them to examples of alternative practices and models, in addition to providing useful findings and recommendations. This presentation draws heavily on chapters of the new EP3 guide: Effective Practices for Physics Programs which provides advice and suggestions for both physics departments and external consultants during the departmental review process.
      • Supporting Program Improvement with a Departmental Action Leadership Institute
      • PAR-B.09
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Joel Corbo, David Craig, Sarah McKagan

      • Type: Invited
      • The Effective Practices for Physics Programs (EP3) Project aims to help physics programs respond to challenges they already face with a collection of knowledge, experience, and proven good practice. In addition to a written guide, the EP3 Project will run a Departmental Action Leadership Institute (DALI), a two-day in-person workshop and year-long virtual community to support department members in leading improvements to their program that align with EP3. Five departments will select two faculty members each to participate in a DALI. These participants will learn to effectively lead a local departmental team, strengthen the capacity of that team to create and sustain change, and help the team to implement and assess their plans—all with the goal of developing a culture of continuous self-reflection, assessment, and improvement in the department. We will discuss the goals, structure, and planned implementation of DALIs in this presentation.
      • EP3: A Guide to Departmental Improvement
      • PAR-B.09
      • Sun 07/19, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Theodore Hodapp
      • Type: Invited
      • To assist physics departments and faculty as they improve undergraduate education, the American Physical Society, in collaboration with the American Association of Physics Teachers, is developing a comprehensive guide for program improvement and evaluation, drawn from research findings and community knowledge. Scheduled for release in late 2020, the guide will provide concise advice on nearly all aspects of undergraduate education including suggestions on how to effectively evaluate impact. The EP3 guide will also offer departments guidance on how to produce detailed evidence of how they plan, evaluate, and improve undergraduate learning to help meet university accreditation requirements or prepare for or conduct external site reviews. This presentation will give a broad introduction to the guide and solicit feedback from the audience on how best to make these materials available to the community.
  • Virtual Coffee Break Drop In  

      • Virtual Coffee Break Drop In
      • SPEC01
      • Sun 07/19, 11:30AM - 4:00PM (EDT)


      • Type: Event
  • Virtual Game Night  

      • Virtual Game Night
      • GAMES
      • Mon 07/20, 4:30PM - 6:30PM (EDT)

      • by James Laverty
      • Type: Event
  • Voices of Women in Physics  

      • Voices of Women in Physics
      • STPAR-7
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 2:30PM (EDT)

      • by Chandralekha Singh
      • Type: Panel
      • Voices of Women in Physics
      • STPAR-7
      • Wed 07/22, 1:30PM - 3:30PM (EDT)

      • by Chandralekha Singh
      • Type: Panel
      • This panel discussion with four women physicists focuses on many topics pertaining to their physics journey. The panelists are Ximena Cid, Geraldine Cochran, Gina Quan and Donna Stokes.
  • Welcome and Orientation  

      • Welcome and Orientation
      • PL
      • Sun 07/19, 10:00AM - 10:30AM (EDT)


      • Type: Plenary
      • Andrew Barnard, Michigan Technological University
      • PL01
      • Sun 07/19, 10:30AM - 11:30AM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Plenary
      • Acoustics: A Model for Interdisciplinary Research and Teaching in Physics: What gets students excited for STEAM careers? In my experience, it is interdisciplinary subjects that can spark interest in students of all backgrounds. I entered the field of Acoustics because it was so interdisciplinary. Acoustics is a core area of physics, but also fills knowledge areas in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, mathematics, biology, arts, theater, medicine, computer science, and other disciplines. A background in acoustics is a broad introduction to the physical principles of science and engineering. In this talk, I will share insights from my interdisciplinary program in acoustics from both a research and teaching perspective. Anecdotes from the classroom will be presented as well as overviews of varied interdisciplinary research topics from underwater sensing to carbon nanotube speakers. I will share my passion for the field of acoustics and show how it transitions into the success of students on many, varied career paths.
  • Zahra Hazari, Florida International University  

      • Zahra Hazari, Florida International University
      • PL04
      • Mon 07/20, 11:00AM - 12:30PM (EDT)

      • by Jan Mader
      • Type: Plenary
      • STEP UP: A Social Movement to Promote Cultural Change in Physics - Physics, as a field, is developed and maintained by a community, and thus reflects historic and modern cultural norms set by that community, both consciously and unconsciously.  This includes how physics is defined, what it means to do physics, and what it means to be a physicist.  In order to shift cultural meanings to be more inclusive and equitable, we need to reflect on the norms and collectively work to disrupt those norms that marginalize groups and limit advancement.  One approach is to pose counternarratives that disrupt narrow stereotypic viewpoints.  Counternarratives are central to the STEP UP project, which focuses on mobilizing thousands of physics educators to inspire young women in physics. STEP UP presents counternarratives to students through lessons/materials that explicitly discuss the role of bias in the field and highlight a broad range of careers/goals pursued by diverse individuals with a physics degree.  Another counternarrative is presented through the agents of change who lead the movement – teachers. In a culture that undervalues teachers and teaching as a profession, a powerful counternarrative is that teachers can collectively affect cultural change.  Given this framing, the presentation will feature Zahra Hazari, the plenary speaker, as well as teachers who are helping to lead the way: Bree Barnett Dreyfuss, Colleen Epler-Ruths, Brian Kays, John Metzler, and Laura Sloma.

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