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PERC 2009 Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: Research Projects in Introductory Physics: Impacts on Student Learning and Attitudes
Abstract: Over the last two years UBC has completely revamped their introductory course for non-physics majors to present physics in terms of everyday situations and real-world issues of energy and climate change.  These changes attempt to reinforce connections between classroom physics and real-world phenomena through the lecture examples, weekly context-rich tutorials, and incorporation of real-world model problems in lab experiments.
A key change was the incorporation of a final project where groups of students research and present on a topic of their choice related to the course.  Students were asked to quantitatively model a real-world situation to make a choice or settle a dispute.  
Near the end of the second year of implementation students were surveyed to examine the project's impact on their attitudes towards physics and were tested for transfer using novel real-world problems.  This poster will present the results of these assessments and discuss their implications for the course.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster
Contributed Poster: Download the Contributed Poster

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Mathew "Sandy" Martinuk
University of British Columbia
6224 Agricultural Rd
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z1
Phone: 604 822 3853
Co-Author(s)
and Co-Presenter(s)
Rachel  Moll
UBC Department of Curriculum Studies
rfmoll -at- gmail.com

Andrzej  Kotlicki
UBC Department of Physics and Astronomy
kotlicki -at- physics.ubc.ca