Trends In Physics Teaching

“Physics is the queen of science.” - David Gross Nobel Laureate, Physics (2004)



Transcript of Trends In Physics Teaching

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“Physics is the queen of science.”

-David Gross

Nobel Laureate, Physics (2004)

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SCIENCESCIENCESheryl Lyn C. MonterolaUP College of Education15 May 2009

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Presentation Outline

I. Principles of Teaching Physics

II. Teaching Strategies

III. Research-based Practices

IV. Assessment Materials

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Foundation of Physics Teaching

Learning becomes meaningful when students are actively engaged in the

construction of knowledge.


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Implications of Constructivist Theory

BIG SHIFT• Passive

Learning• Active


• Teacher as “sage on the stage”

• Teacher as “guide on the side“

• Abstract knowledge

• Relevant and enduring knowledge

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Dale’s Cone of Learning Experience

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5 E Learning CycleENGAGE

•Probing prior knowledge

• Eliciting interest

Basic Formula of Physics Teaching


opportunity for interaction and

hands-on activity

EXPLAIN•Processing information

ELABORATE•Allowing students to apply concepts into new situations



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Basic Formula of Physics Teaching




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1. Graphic Organizers- visual proofs of prior & new knowledge

Teaching Strategies

KWL Chart

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1. Graphic Organizers

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1. Graphic Organizers

Radiation Concept Trefoil

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2. PuzzlesTeaching Strategies

Wordles (Word Puzzles)

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3. Mental ModelsTeaching Strategies

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4. POEs (Predict Observe Explain Activities)

Teaching Strategies

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5. Problem-based Activities

Teaching Strategies

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5. Models

Teaching Strategies

Human Eye ModelCollichia, Wiesner, Waltner & Zollman. The Physics Teacher. Dec 2008

Matter Model

EM Wave Model

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5. Technology Integration• Video-based Lesson

– CONSTEC Physics in Everyday Life

• Virtual Physics Laboratory• Cellphone as teaching tool

• Data Logging

• Use of Classroom Response System

Teaching Strategies

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Virtual Physics Laboratory5. Technology Integration

PhET Interactive Simulations

University of Colorado at Boulder

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Cellphone as teaching tool

– Falca, Gomes, Pereira, Coelho & Santos. The Physics Teacher. Mar 2009

5. Technology Integration

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Data logging

– PASCO Setup

5. Technology Integration

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Use of Classroom Response System

5. Technology Integration

• Gives immediate feedback• Makes class more interactive

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Peer Instruction Method

Research-based Teaching Practices

Eric Mazur (1997). Harvard University.

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• Reduces gender gap [American Journal of Physics (AJP), 2006]

• Increases conceptual learning and problem solving (AJP, 2008)

• Reduces number of dropouts (AJP, 2008)

Peer Instruction Method

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Optimal Seating Arrangement

Research-based Teaching Practices

Monterola, C., Roxas, M.R., Carreon-Monterola, S.L. (2009). Characterizing the effect of seating arrangement on classroom learning using neural networks. Complexity. Wiley Periodicals Inc.

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• Efficacy of multimedia learning modules over traditional textbooks (AJP, Feb 2009)

• Course weblog with discussions on real-world applications sustains students’ positive attitude toward physics (AJP, Nov, 2008)

Research-based Teaching Practices

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Concept Inventory (CI)Definition

An exam that explores students' mental models and qualitative images of how the subject works1


To recognize common misconceptions that exist in students’ minds

Format 2

• multiple choice• options include common-misconceptions and an answer that contains

the true interpretation of the concept

Sources: 1Pavelich et. al. (2004). Development of a Chemistry Concept Inventory for Use in Chemistry, Materials and other Engineering Courses. Paper Presentation, Engineering Education Annual Conference and Exposition.

2Evans & Hestenes (2001). The Concept of the Concept Inventory Assessment Instrument. Paper Presentation, Frointiers in Education Conference.

Assessment Materials

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Physics Concept Inventories

• Force Concept Inventory (FCI)

• Determining and Interpreting Resistive Electric Circuit Concepts Test (DIRECT)

• Conceptual Survey on Electricity (CSE), Conceptual Survey on Magnetism (CSM), and Conceptual Survey on Electricity and Magnetism (CSEM)

• Test of Understanding of Kinematic Graphs (TUG-K)

• Force and Motion Conceptual Evaluation (FMCE)

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I. Principles of Teaching Physics- constructivism, 5 E learning cycle, ABC

II. Teaching Strategies- graphic organizers, puzzles, mental models, POEs, problem-based activities, technology integration

III. Research-based Practices- PI, optimal seating arrangement, weblog, multimedia modules

IV. Assessment Materials- Concept inventories

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Thank you.