2012 BFY Abstract Detail Page
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||The Advanced Lab Sequence at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
||MCLA's Advanced Lab experience is a sequence of two courses for senior physics majors. The content of the course includes electronics and methods of data analysis, but the course's primary intent is to be a complete research experience. In the first semester, students research a topic, design an experiment, and write a proposal for funding. The second semester is devoted to the experiment itself. All students work on individual projects they have designed and built themselves. Because we are a small public liberal arts college, resources are scarce, and students are encouraged to be creative in designing experiments on a tight budget. Each week, students meet for group meeting, where they discuss their progress of the previous week and help one another with experimental challenges. At the end of the second semester, in addition to writing a paper on their research, students prepare posters for presentation at MCLA's Undergraduate Research Conference.
Assessment of such a course of study can be challenging. We have designed and present in this poster an assessment scheme that includes guidelines and rubrics for grading individual research, writing a grant proposal, keeping a laboratory notebook, designing a poster, and writing a final paper.
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Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
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