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written by Brant E. Hinrichs
An intermediate E&M course (i.e. based on Griffiths [1]) involves the extensive integration of vector calculus concepts and notation with abstract physics concepts like field and potential. We hope that students take what they have learned in their math courses and apply it to help represent and make sense of the physics. To assess how well students are able to do this integration and application I have developed several simple concept tests on position and unit vectors in non-Cartesian coordinate systems as they are used in intermediate E&M. In this paper I describe one of these concept tests and present results that show both undergraduate physics majors and physics graduate students have difficulty using spherical unit vectors to write position vectors in 3-d space.
Physics Education Research Conference 2010
Part of the PER Conference series
Portland, Oregon: July 21-22, 2010
Volume 1289, Pages 173-176
Subjects ADS Supplements Resource Types
Education - Basic Research
- Assessment
= Conceptual Assessment
Electricity & Magnetism
- General
- Reference Material
= Report
= Research study
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- Researchers
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Formats:
application/pdf
non-digital
Mirror:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.3515190
Access Rights:
Limited free access and
Available for purchase
A preprint of the work is available. A hard copy of the PERC 2010 proceedings is available for purchase from the AIP.
Restriction:
© 2010 American Institute of Physics
DOI:
10.1063/1.3515190
PACS:
01.40.Fk
Keywords:
Maxwell's Integral Equation, intermediate electrodynamics, position vector, PERC 2010, spherical unit vectors
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created October 25, 2010 by Alea Smith
Record Updated:
May 1, 2013 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
August 24, 2010
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Record Link
AIP Format
B. Hinrichs, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2010, Portland, Oregon, 2010, WWW Document, (http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902).
AJP/PRST-PER
B. Hinrichs, Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2010, Portland, Oregon, 2010, <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902>.
APA Format
Hinrichs, B. (2010, July 21-22). Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2010, Portland, Oregon. Retrieved December 19, 2014, from http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902
Chicago Format
Hinrichs, Brant. "Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2010, Portland, Oregon, July 21-22, 2010. http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902 (accessed 19 December 2014).
MLA Format
Hinrichs, Brant. "Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M." Physics Education Research Conference 2010. Portland, Oregon: 2010. 173-176 Vol. 1289 of PER Conference. 19 Dec. 2014 <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Brant Hinrichs", Title = {Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2010}, Pages = {173-176}, Address = {Portland, Oregon}, Series = {PER Conference}, Volume = {1289}, Month = {July 21-22}, Year = {2010} }
Refer Export Format

%A Brant Hinrichs
%T Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M
%S PER Conference
%V 1289
%D July 21-22 2010
%P 173-176
%C Portland, Oregon
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2010
%O July 21-22
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Hinrichs, Brant
%D July 21-22 2010
%T Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2010
%C Portland, Oregon
%V 1289
%P 173-176
%S PER Conference
%8 July 21-22
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=10444&DocID=1902


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Writing Position Vectors in 3-d Space: A Student Difficulty With Spherical Unit Vectors in Intermediate E&M:


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