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Transforming Upper-Division Quantum Mechanics: Learning Goals and Assessment Documents

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Transforming Upper-Division Quantum Mechanics: Learning Goals and Assessment 

written by Steve Goldhaber, Steven J. Pollock, Michael Dubson, Paul Beale, and Katherine K. Perkins

In order to help students overcome documented difficulties learning quantum mechanics (QM) concepts, we have transformed our upper-division QM I course using principles of learning theory and active engagement. Key components of this process include establishing learning goals and developing a valid, reliable conceptual assessment tool to measure the extent to which students achieve these learning goals. The course learning goals were developed with broad faculty input, and serve as the basis for the design of the course assessment tool. The development of the assessment tool has included significant faculty input and feedback, twenty-one student interviews, a review of PER literature, and administration of the survey to two semesters of QM I students as well as to a cohort of graduate students. Here, we discuss this ongoing development process and present initial findings from our QM class for the past two semesters.

Published November 11, 2009
Last Modified October 6, 2009

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