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American Journal of Physics
written by Stamatis Vokos, Peter S. Shaffer, Lillian C. McDermott, and Bradley S. Ambrose
This paper reports on a study of student understanding of the wave nature of matter in the context of the pattern produced by the diffraction and interference of particles. Students in first-year, second-year, and third-year physics courses were asked to predict and explain how a single change in an experimental setup would affect the pattern produced when electrons or other particles are incident on a single slit, double slit, or crystal lattice. The errors made by students after standard instruction indicated the presence of similar conceptual and reasoning difficulties at all levels. Among the most serious was an inability to interpret diffraction and interference in terms of a basic wave model. Other errors revealed a lack of a functional understanding of the de Broglie wavelength. Students often treated it as a fixed property of a particle, not as a function of the momentum. An important goal of this investigation was to provide a research base for the design of instruction to help students develop and apply a basic wave model for matter.
American Journal of Physics: Volume 68, Issue S1, Pages S42-S51
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Basic Research
- Alternative Conceptions
- Assessment
General Physics
- Physics Education Research
- Lower Undergraduate
- Upper Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
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© 2000 American Journal of Physics
Additional information is available.
DOI:
10.1119/1.19519
PII:
S0002-9505(00)50607-2
Keywords:
Concept Formation, Demonstrations (Science), Diffraction, Higher Education, Misconceptions, Particles, Physics, Science Education, Science Process Skills, Scientific Concepts
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created July 14, 2005 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
November 28, 2005 by Vince Kuo
Last Update
when Cataloged:
July 1, 2000
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Record Link
AIP Format
S. Vokos, P. Shaffer, L. McDermott, and B. Ambrose, Am. J. Phys. 68 (S1), S42 (2000), WWW Document, (http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519).
AJP/PRST-PER
S. Vokos, P. Shaffer, L. McDermott, and B. Ambrose, Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles Am. J. Phys. 68 (S1), S42 (2000), <http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519>.
APA Format
Vokos, S., Shaffer, P., McDermott, L., & Ambrose, B. (2000, July 1). Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles. Am. J. Phys., 68(S1), S42-S51. Retrieved July 30, 2014, from http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519
Chicago Format
Vokos, S, P. Shaffer, L. McDermott, and B. Ambrose. "Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles." Am. J. Phys. 68, no. S1, (July 1, 2000): S42-S51, http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519 (accessed 30 July 2014).
MLA Format
Vokos, Stamatis, Peter Shaffer, Lillian C. McDermott, and Bradley S. Ambrose. "Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles." Am. J. Phys. 68.S1 (2000): S42-S51. 30 July 2014 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519>.
BibTeX Export Format
@article{ Author = "Stamatis Vokos and Peter Shaffer and Lillian C. McDermott and Bradley S. Ambrose", Title = {Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles}, Journal = {Am. J. Phys.}, Volume = {68}, Number = {S1}, Pages = {S42-S51}, Month = {July}, Year = {2000} }
Refer Export Format

%A Stamatis Vokos
%A Peter Shaffer
%A Lillian C. McDermott
%A Bradley S. Ambrose
%T Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles
%J Am. J. Phys.
%V 68
%N S1
%D July 1, 2000
%P S42-S51
%U http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519
%O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Journal Article
%A Vokos, Stamatis
%A Shaffer, Peter
%A McDermott, Lillian C.
%A Ambrose, Bradley S.
%D July 1, 2000
%T Student understanding of the wave nature of matter: Diffraction and interference of particles
%J Am. J. Phys.
%V 68
%N S1
%P S42-S51
%8 July 1, 2000
%U http://dx.doi.org/10.1119/1.19519


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The AIP Style presented is based on information from the AIP Style Manual.

The AJP/PRST-PER presented is based on the AIP Style with the addition of journal article titles and conference proceeding article titles.

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