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written by Paula R. L. Heron
As part of the tutorial component of introductory calculus-based physics at the University of Washington, students take weekly pretests that consist of conceptual questions. Pretests are so named because they precede each tutorial, but they are frequently administered after lecture instruction. Many variables associated with class composition and prior instruction (if any) could, in principle, affect student performance on these questions. Nonetheless, the results are often found to be "essentially the same" in all classes. With data available from a large number of classes, it is possible to characterize the typical variation quantitatively. In this paper three questions for which we have accumulated thousands of responses, from dozens of classes representing different conditions with respect to the textbook in use, the amount of prior instruction, etc., serve as examples. For each question, we examine the variation in student performance across all classes. We also compare subsets categorized according to the amount of relevant prior instruction each class had received. A preliminary analysis suggests that the variation in performance is essentially random. No statistically significant difference is observed between results obtained before relevant instruction begins and after it has been completed. The results provide evidence that exposure to concepts in lecture and textbook is not sufficient to ensure an improvement in performance on questions that require qualitative reasoning.
Physics Education Research Conference 2012
Part of the PER Conference series
Philadelphia, PA: August 1-2, 2012
Volume 1513, Pages 174-177
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education Foundations
- Assessment
= Conceptual Assessment
= Methods
- Research Design & Methodology
= Statistics
Education Practices
- Pedagogy
- Lower Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
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Mirror:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4789680
Access Rights:
Free access and
Available for purchase
A preprint of the work is available. A hard copy of the PERC 2012 proceedings is available for purchase from the AIP.
Restriction:
© 2012 American Institute of Physics
DOI:
10.1063/1.4789680
NSF Number:
0088840
PACSs:
01.40.Fk
01.40.gb
Keyword:
PERC 2012
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created June 26, 2013 by Zachary Davis
Record Updated:
December 17, 2013 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
January 24, 2013
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Record Link
AIP Format
P. Heron, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2012, Philadelphia, PA, 2012, WWW Document, (http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338).
AJP/PRST-PER
P. Heron, Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2012, Philadelphia, PA, 2012, <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338>.
APA Format
Heron, P. (2012, August 1-2). Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2012, Philadelphia, PA. Retrieved October 25, 2014, from http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338
Chicago Format
Heron, Paula. "Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2012, Philadelphia, PA, August 1-2, 2012. http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338 (accessed 25 October 2014).
MLA Format
Heron, Paula. "Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?." Physics Education Research Conference 2012. Philadelphia, PA: 2012. 174-177 Vol. 1513 of PER Conference. 25 Oct. 2014 <http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Paula Heron", Title = {Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2012}, Pages = {174-177}, Address = {Philadelphia, PA}, Series = {PER Conference}, Volume = {1513}, Month = {August 1-2}, Year = {2012} }
Refer Export Format

%A Paula Heron
%T Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?
%S PER Conference
%V 1513
%D August 1-2 2012
%P 174-177
%C Philadelphia, PA
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2012
%O August 1-2
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Heron, Paula
%D August 1-2 2012
%T Student performance on conceptual questions: Does instruction matter?
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2012
%C Philadelphia, PA
%V 1513
%P 174-177
%S PER Conference
%8 August 1-2
%U http://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=12804&DocID=3338


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