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written by Pablo Barniol and Genaro Zavala
In this paper, we investigate common preconceptions that Mexican university students have with the concept of direction of a vector. Students entering a large private Mexican university were tested before receiving instruction related to vectors in an introductory physics class. In the first part we present students' difficulties with the direction concept of a vector due to the use of two conventions in the Mexican system. The common convention of direction in the American system conflicts with a convention of this property as it is composed of two separate properties: direction as the line of action and sense as which of the two ways the vector points along that line. Both conventions are regularly used in the Mexican educational system and students use one or the other without doing it explicitly. In the second part, based on the work of Nguyen and Meltzer, we designed problems in which students are asked for direction of a vector without indicating any particular convention, and problems in which students are asked for direction of a vector indicating the line of action convention. We analyze preconceptions of direction in the first type of problems (investigating in depth the ones detected by Nguyen and Meltzer), and preconceptions of direction and sense in the second type of problems. At the end we compare responses of students in the two types of problems.
Physics Education Research Conference 2009
Part of the PER Conference series
Ann Arbor, Michigan: July 29-30, 2009
Volume 1179, Pages 85-88
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Basic Research
- Alternative Conceptions
General Physics
- Physics Education Research
Mathematical Tools
- Vector Algebra
- Lower Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
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Formats:
application/pdf
non-digital
Mirror:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.3266761
Access Rights:
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A preprint of the work is available. A hard copy of the PERC 2009 proceedings is also available.
Restriction:
© 2009 American Institute of Physics
DOI:
10.1063/1.3266761
PACS:
01.40.Fk
Keywords:
PERC 2009, direction, direction convention, preconceptions, sense, vector
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created October 14, 2009 by Alea Smith
Record Updated:
July 12, 2010 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
November 11, 2009
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Record Link
AIP Format
P. Barniol and G. Zavala, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2009, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 2009, WWW Document, (http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387).
AJP/PRST-PER
P. Barniol and G. Zavala, Investigation of Students’ Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2009, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 2009, <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387>.
APA Format
Barniol, P., & Zavala, G. (2009, July 29-30). Investigation of Students’ Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2009, Ann Arbor, Michigan. Retrieved October 21, 2014, from http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387
Chicago Format
Barniol, Pablo, and Genaro Zavala. "Investigation of Students’ Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2009, Ann Arbor, Michigan, July 29-30, 2009. http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387 (accessed 21 October 2014).
MLA Format
Barniol, Pablo, and Genaro Zavala. "Investigation of Students’ Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University." Physics Education Research Conference 2009. Ann Arbor, Michigan: 2009. 85-88 Vol. 1179 of PER Conference. 21 Oct. 2014 <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Pablo Barniol and Genaro Zavala", Title = {Investigation of Students’ Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2009}, Pages = {85-88}, Address = {Ann Arbor, Michigan}, Series = {PER Conference}, Volume = {1179}, Month = {July 29-30}, Year = {2009} }
Refer Export Format

%A Pablo Barniol
%A Genaro Zavala
%T Investigation of Students' Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University
%S PER Conference
%V 1179
%D July 29-30 2009
%P 85-88
%C Ann Arbor, Michigan
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2009
%O July 29-30
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Barniol, Pablo
%A Zavala, Genaro
%D July 29-30 2009
%T Investigation of Students' Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2009
%C Ann Arbor, Michigan
%V 1179
%P 85-88
%S PER Conference
%8 July 29-30
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=9514&DocID=1387


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Investigation of Students’ Preconceptions and Difficulties with the Vector Direction Concept at a Mexican University:


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