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Abstract Title: PUM: Developing Reasoning Skills in the First Physics Courses
Abstract: Physics Union Mathematics (PUM) is a new physics curriculum spanning from middle to high school. The physics curriculum is based on the successful college-level Investigative Science Learning Environment (ISLE) curriculum in which students engage in the thought processes physicists use to construct new knowledge. An important feature of PUM is the development of mathematical reasoning skills from the outset in the context of learning physics. PUM is infused with grade-appropriate mathematical tools, and activities in which students use those tools to reason about physics. Starting in September 2008, 40 New Jersey teachers field-tested modules of the curriculum. In this poster we focus on the development of specific mathematical tools used in scientific reasoning – integers and zero, graphs and rates of change, bar charts, proportional reasoning, and algebraic descriptions- and how students at this level use them to reason. We will share the results of the implementation of 4 modules.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Suzanne White Brahmia
Rutgers University
Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
Math and Science Learning Center
Piscataway, NJ 08854-8019
Co-Author(s)
and Co-Presenter(s)
Hector Lopez, Rutgers University
Tara Bartiromo , Rutgers University
Joseph Santonacita , Rutgers University
James Finley , Rutgers University
Eugenia Etkina , Rutgers University