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written by Benjamin D. Geller, Benjamin W. Dreyfus, Julia Gouvea, Vashti Sawtelle, Chandra Turpen, and Edward F. Redish
In our Introductory Physics for Life Scientists (IPLS) course at the University of Maryland, we are building interdisciplinary bridges that help students better understand thermodynamics. One aspect of this endeavor involves having students grapple with the physical processes underlying heuristic rules that they bring to our course from their biology and chemistry classes. In particular, we have implemented a series of activities and problems intended to unpack the hydrophobicity of oil, a key step in understanding the formation of cell membranes. The spontaneous separation of oil and water is predicted by the common rule of thumb, "like dissolves like," but understanding where this comes from requires careful consideration of energetic and entropic effects. The rule must also be reconciled with the seemingly contradictory physical principle that opposite electric charges attract. This paper describes how holding up a heuristic that students have encountered in their biology and chemistry courses alongside physical principles can prompt students to look for interdisciplinary reconciliation among concepts that they previously did not even see as related. We view this as an important step toward a less fragmented experience for science students.
Physics Education Research Conference 2013
Part of the PER Conference series
Portland, OR: July 17-18, 2013
Pages 157-160
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Applied Research
- Pedagogy
= Multidisciplinary
Education - Basic Research
- Alternative Conceptions
- Cognition
= Cognitive Conflict
- Problem Solving
= Heuristics
Other Sciences
- Life Sciences
Thermo & Stat Mech
- General
- Lower Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
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Format:
application/pdf
Mirror:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/perc.20…
Access Rights:
Free access
License:
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the published article's author(s), title, proceedings citation, and DOI.
Rights Holder:
American Association of Physics Teachers
DOI:
10.1119/perc.2013.pr.027
NSF Number:
1122818
PACSs:
01.40.-d
01.40.Fk
01.30.Cc
89.20.-a
Keywords:
Enthalpy, IPLS, PERC 2013, biology education, entropy, free energy, heuristic, interdisciplinary
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created January 30, 2014 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
February 1, 2014 by Bruce Mason
Last Update
when Cataloged:
December 16, 2013
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Record Link
AIP Format
B. Geller, B. Dreyfus, J. Gouvea, V. Sawtelle, C. Turpen, and E. Redish, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2013, Portland, OR, 2013, WWW Document, (http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679).
AJP/PRST-PER
B. Geller, B. Dreyfus, J. Gouvea, V. Sawtelle, C. Turpen, and E. Redish, "Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2013, Portland, OR, 2013, <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679>.
APA Format
Geller, B., Dreyfus, B., Gouvea, J., Sawtelle, V., Turpen, C., & Redish, E. (2013, July 17-18). "Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2013, Portland, OR. Retrieved October 24, 2014, from http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679
Chicago Format
Geller, B, B. Dreyfus, J. Gouvea, V. Sawtelle, C. Turpen, and E. Redish. ""Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2013, Portland, OR, July 17-18, 2013. http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679 (accessed 24 October 2014).
MLA Format
Geller, Benjamin, Benjamin Dreyfus, Julia Gouvea, Vashti Sawtelle, Chandra Turpen, and Edward F. Redish. ""Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics." Physics Education Research Conference 2013. Portland, OR: 2013. 157-160 of PER Conference. 24 Oct. 2014 <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Benjamin Geller and Benjamin Dreyfus and Julia Gouvea and Vashti Sawtelle and Chandra Turpen and Edward F. Redish", Title = {"Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2013}, Pages = {157-160}, Address = {Portland, OR}, Series = {PER Conference}, Month = {July 17-18}, Year = {2013} }
Refer Export Format

%A Benjamin Geller
%A Benjamin Dreyfus
%A Julia Gouvea
%A Vashti Sawtelle
%A Chandra Turpen
%A Edward F. Redish
%T "Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics
%S PER Conference
%D July 17-18 2013
%P 157-160
%C Portland, OR
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2013
%O July 17-18
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Geller, Benjamin
%A Dreyfus, Benjamin
%A Gouvea, Julia
%A Sawtelle, Vashti
%A Turpen, Chandra
%A Redish, Edward F.
%D July 17-18 2013
%T "Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2013
%C Portland, OR
%P 157-160
%S PER Conference
%8 July 17-18
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13131&DocID=3679


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"Like Dissolves Like": Unpacking Student Reasoning About Thermodynamic Heuristics:


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