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Physical Review Special Topics - Physics Education Research
written by Shih-Yin Lin and Chandralekha Singh
In this study, we examine introductory physics students' ability to perform analogical reasoning between two isomorphic problems which employ the same underlying physics principles but have different surface features. Three hundred sixty-two students from a calculus-based and an algebra-based introductory physics course were given a quiz in the recitation in which they had to first learn from a solved problem provided and take advantage of what they learned from it to solve another problem (which we call the quiz problem) which was isomorphic. Previous research suggests that the multiple-concept quiz problem is challenging for introductory students. Students in different recitation classes received different interventions in order to help them discern and exploit the underlying similarities of the isomorphic solved and quiz problems. We also conducted think-aloud interviews with four introductory students in order to understand in depth the difficulties they had and explore strategies to provide better scaffolding. We found that most students were able to learn from the solved problem to some extent with the scaffolding provided and invoke the relevant principles in the quiz problem. However, they were not necessarily able to apply the principles correctly. Research suggests that more scaffolding is needed to help students in applying these principles appropriately. We outline a few possible strategies for future investigation.
Subjects ADS Supplements Resource Types
Education - Applied Research
- Active Learning
= Problem Solving
- Pedagogy
Education - Basic Research
- Learning Theory
= Transfer
- Problem Solving
- Reference Material
= Research study
PER-Central Type Intended Users Ratings
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- Researchers
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Format:
application/pdf
Access Rights:
Free access
License:
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license.
Rights Holder:
American Physical Society
DOI:
10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104
PACSs:
01.40.gb
01.40.Ha
Keywords:
Analogical Reasoning, Isomorphic Problems, Scaffolding
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created April 30, 2012 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
May 9, 2012 by Vince Kuo
Last Update
when Cataloged:
August 31, 2011
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Record Link
AIP Format
S. Lin and C. Singh, Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res. 7 (2), 020104 (2011), WWW Document, (http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104).
AJP/PRST-PER
S. Lin and C. Singh, Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics, Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res. 7 (2), 020104 (2011), <http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104>.
APA Format
Lin, S., & Singh, C. (2011, August 31). Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics. Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res., 7(2), 020104. Retrieved September 24, 2014, from http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104
Chicago Format
Lin, Shih-Yin, and Chandralekha Singh. "Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics." Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res. 7, no. 2, (August 31, 2011): 020104, http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104 (accessed 24 September 2014).
MLA Format
Lin, Shih-Yin, and Chandralekha Singh. "Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics." Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res. 7.2 (2011): 020104. 24 Sep. 2014 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104>.
BibTeX Export Format
@article{ Author = "Shih-Yin Lin and Chandralekha Singh", Title = {Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics}, Journal = {Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res.}, Volume = {7}, Number = {2}, Pages = {020104}, Month = {August}, Year = {2011} }
Refer Export Format

%A Shih-Yin Lin
%A Chandralekha Singh
%T Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics
%J Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res.
%V 7
%N 2
%D August 31, 2011
%P 020104
%U http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Journal Article
%A Lin, Shih-Yin
%A Singh, Chandralekha
%D August 31, 2011
%T Using isomorphic problems to learn introductory physics
%J Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res.
%V 7
%N 2
%P 020104
%8 August 31, 2011
%U http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevSTPER.7.020104


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