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PERC 2009 Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: Usage of the Term "Force," Reasoning Ability, and FCI Performance
Abstract: Will students achieving greater FCI gains be less likely to use "force" synonymously with other terminology following instruction?  Can reasoning ability or demonstrated conceptual understanding of "force" be used as a predictor of accuracy in the usage of the term "force"?  For this particular study, 230 participants completed Force Concept Inventory (FCI) pre- and post-tests, Lawson's Classroom Test of Scientific Reasoning (TSR) and Mechanics Language Usage (MLU) pre- and post-tests.  The conventional expected result was not strongly supported. Although individuals with greater FCI gains had greater TSR scores, these students did not necessarily use "force" more discerningly.  That is, regardless of FCI gains and reasoning ability, there is a noted tendency for students to continue using "force" equivalently with other colloquial terms like "power," "energy," "strength" and "momentum."  The data for this study were collected in large enrollment lecture based algebra physics classes, first semester.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Steven J. Maier
Northwestern Oklahoma State University
709 Oklahoma Blvd
Alva, OK 73717
Phone: 580 327 8562
Fax: 580 327 8556