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Using Expectancy Violation To Investigate Student Dissatisfaction In Studio Physics Documents

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Using Expectancy Violation To Investigate Student Dissatisfaction In Studio Physics 

written by Jon D. H. Gaffney, Amy L. Housley Gaffney, and Jacquelyn J. Chini

Physics students, especially those in pedagogically reformed courses, are sometimes dissatisfied with the course structure. Expectancy violation (EV), which arises when students' pedagogical expectations are not met, is a possible cause for this dissatisfaction. Previous research has identified instances of EV in reformed physics classes, but detailed investigations are needed to determine how EV relates to course satisfaction. In this pilot study, we paired a modified Pedagogical Expectancy Violation Assessment (PEVA) with a course satisfaction questionnaire to measure students' perceived expectations, experiences, and satisfaction in three different physics courses: algebra-based SCALE-UP style at EKU (N=61), calculus-based lecture at UCF (N=179), and calculus-based SCALE-UP at UCF (N=88). Course satisfaction was positively correlated with performance and the number of positively-perceived EVs and negatively correlated with the number of negatively-perceived EVs. Students' opinions about the frequency of a few particular activities predicted a large amount of the variability in course satisfaction. While inconclusive, these preliminary results guide reform efforts of the PEVA.

Published February 1, 2014
Last Modified January 30, 2014

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