aapt_program_final_sm13 - page 95

July 13–17, 2013
Tuesday afternoon
Session ED: Introductory Courses II
Location: Broadway III/IV
Sponsor: AAPT
Date: Tuesday, July 16
Time: 4–4:40 p.m.
Presider: Debora Katz
4-4:10 p.m. Going to the Physical Situation: Making the
Implicit Explicit – 1
Contributed – Dennis Gilbert, Lane Community College, 4000 E. 30th Ave.,
Eugene, OR 97405;
Jared Stenson, Gonzaga University
Dennis Gilbert will describe a pedagogical approach in which Calc-based
General Physics Students are challenged and supported to explicitly
implement a perspective of “going to the physical situation” in developing
both conceptual knowledge and problem solving ability. This approach ef-
fectively engages a number of physics learning challenges, such as moving
beyond “plug and chug” and moving to principle-based understanding. It
also addresses student expectations about the nature of science and phys-
ics, the nature of knowing, and identity as physics learners. The talk will
introduce a graphic chart presented during the course on problem solving.
4:10-4:20 p.m. Going to the Physical Situation: Making
the Implicit Explicit – 2
Contributed – Jared R. Stenson, Gonzaga University, 502 E Boone Ave.,
Spokane, WA 99258;
Dennis Gilbert, Lane Community College
Jared Stenson will provide a deeper look at several practical issues from
his experience implementing the perspective of “going to the physical
situation” (see part 1) in developing conceptual knowledge and problem
solving ability in the Classical Mechanics section of Calc-based General
Physics. This presentation describes challenges and efforts of effectively
engaging students who are sometimes resistant due to their familiarity and
previous success using a different approach. These efforts include framing
elements of the course, the choice of problems for discussion, and the exam
structure. A joint working paper about the issues of this talk and the one
above can be obtained from the presenters.
ED03: 4:20-4:30 p.m. Supplemental Problem Solving Sessions
in the Calculus-based Physics Sequence
Contributed – Julie L. Talbot, University of West Georgia, 1601 Maple St.,
Carrollton, GA 30118;
Problem solving is a skill that students are expected to master when taking
physics courses. Many departments require their students to take physics
because they want their students to gain problem-solving skills. However,
this part of physics does not come naturally for many students. In order to
give students extra opportunities to grapple with difficult physics problems,
I have implemented problem-solving sessions where students work in
groups to solve a variety of physics problems. In the sessions, the problems
range from conceptual problems where students have to explain a situation
using physics concepts, to estimation questions, to context-rich prob-
lems, such as the ones used at the University of Minnesota
. After three
semesters, the DFW rates for the Physics I course are 25% for students who
have attended workshop, while it is 75% for students who did not attend
1 P. Heller, et al.
Am. J. Phys.
627, (1992).
2 P. Heller and M. Hollabaugh,
Am. J. Phys.
, 637, (1992).
4:30-4:40 p.m. Enhancing the Modern Physics Course
by Including Waves
Contributed – Paul Weber, Utah Valley University, 800 West University Park-
way, Orem, UT 84058;
I describe a curriculum revision made at the University of Puget Sound,
where a waves course and the sophomore modern physics class were
merged into a yearlong “enhanced” modern physics sequence now required
for the physics major. This approach has many pedagogical and experimen-
tal advantages including a stronger intuitive and mathematical foundation
for quantum physics, more effective inclusion of error analysis and theory
of distributions into the laboratories, and the ability to cover all the areas
of the standard modern physics textbook. It is effective in bridging the gap
from a freshman physics student to the junior-level physics major capable
of taking upper-level classes and laboratory courses. A separate preamble
of mathematical material for oscillations and waves was written to supple-
ment the traditional modern physics text. I will discuss key lessons taken
from teaching this sequence for four years at UPS, including challenges
and successes of the method.
Session EE: Physics Students’
Identity and Community Building
Location: Salon Ballroom II/III
Sponsor: AAPT
Date: Tuesday, July 16
Time: 4–5 p.m.
Presider: Leslie Atkins
4-4:10 p.m. Sustainability and Physics Identity:
Revitalizing Physics Education for Traditionally
Marginalized Groups
Contributed – Zahra Hazari, Clemson University, Department of Engineering
& Science Education, 104 Holtzendorff Hall, Clemson, SC 29634; zahra@
Geoff Potvin, Clemson University
There is a growing need to help students better understand global sustain-
ability issues while also empowering them in their science learning. The
goal of this work is to explore how sustainability topics are addressed in
high school physics classes and how addressing these topics might impact
students’ self-perceptions towards learning physics, particularly for stu-
dents from traditionally marginalized groups. We employ a physics identity
theoretical lens tat incorporates students’ perceptions of being recognized,
interested, and competent in physics. Drawing on data from a large na-
tional survey of college students about their high school science experienc-
es, we found that, compared to biology and chemistry, physics classes are
reported to cover sustainability topics far less frequently, including topics
such as energy supply. Regression results reveal that for female, black, and
Hispanic students, coverage of certain sustainability topics in high school
physics was positively correlated to their physics identity.
4:10-4:20 p.m. Student Collaborative Networks and
Academic Performance in Physics
Contributed – David R. Schmidt, Colorado School of Mines, 2015 Infinity
Circle, #191 Goden, CO 80401;
Ariel M. Bridgeman, Patrick B. Kohl, Colorado School of Mines
Undergraduate physics students commonly collaborate with one another
on homework assignments, especially in more challenging courses.
However, it is not well known if the types of collaboration students engage
in affect their performances. We empirically investigate collaborative
networks and associated performances through a required collaboration
reporting system in two sophomore- level and three junior-level courses
during the 2012-2013 academic year. We employ social network analysis to
quantify the structure and time evolution of these networks, which involve
I...,85,86,87,88,89,90,91,92,93,94 96,97,98,99,100,101,102,103,104,105,...150
Powered by FlippingBook