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Education research is our focus

Welcome to PER-Central, a resource collection for physics education researchers. Here you may find articles, theses and dissertations, research groups, curricular material, and news and events of interest to the PER Community. Learn more about PER-Central.

PER Literature

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Astronomy, Classical Mechanics, Electricity & Magnetism, Fluid Mechanics, General Physics, Mathematical Tools, Modern Physics, Optics, Oscillations & Waves, Other Sciences, Quantum Physics, Relativity, Thermo & Stat Mech

Reviews in PER

Over the past two decades, the PER community has developed a number of effective instructional strategies for calculus-based university physics classes.

This review article helps to bring a set of those results to the instructional community:

The Student-Centered Activities for Large Enrollment Undergraduate Programs (SCALE-UP) project
by R. J. Beichner, J. M. Saul, D. S. Abbott, J. J. Morse, D. L. Deardorff, R. J. Allain, S. W. Bonham, M. H. Dancy, and J. S. Risley.

Find more articles that help to bridge research and practice in Volume 1 of Reviews in PER.

Community Resources

Features

Respectful PER Reviews

This document, prepared by journal editors and PER community members, grew out of conversations that brought attention to the negative impact particular reviews have had on community members. These conversations precipitated a survey inviting community members to share their experiences of the PER journal review process. This 2-page survey summary issues recommendations on the basis of our interpretations. We focus on respectful reviewing and do not comprehensively address reviewing practices writ large.

PER Programs

PER Programs map image

Browse the different PER groups and their descriptions on the PER Program Map.

For the Classroom

SEI: Upper-division Electrostatics (E&M I) Course Materials

SEI: Upper-division Electrostatics (E&M I) Course Materials
This web site contains the research-based curricular materials on junior-level Electricity and Magnetism developed by the University of Colorado Science Education Initiative group. This course is the first semester of a two-semester course covering electro- and magneto-statics and closely follows the standard text by David Griffiths, "Introduction to Electrodynamics." The materials provided include concept tests, homework questions, tutorials, lecture notes, instructor guides, and the results of studies of student difficulties with the class.

Find more PER-based Curricular Materials: Course Packages | Student Activities | Pedagogy Guides

Research Instruments

Relativity Concept Inventory (RCI)

Relativity Concept Inventory (RCI)
The Relativity Concept Inventory (RCI), developed by Aslanides and Savage, assesses student understanding of special relativity concepts commonly taught in introductory physics courses.

Find more assessment instruments

PER Events PER-Central Announcements RSS

Physics Education Research Conference 2020
PERC 2020 will be held July 22-23, 2020 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  The theme will be "Insights, Reflections, & Future Directions: Emergent Themes in the Evolving PER Community."

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Latest Additions Latest Additions to PER-Central RSS

Jun 15 University Modeling Instruction
Jun 15 Writing good negative reviews
Jun 15 Design and validation of a two-tier questionnaire on basic aspects in quantum mechanics
May 28 Multidimensional Item Response Theory and the Conceptual Survey of Electricity and Magnetism

Latest Discussion Posts

July 2 at 11:16 PM EST
Steve Maier posted PERC 20/20 Sessions to the US - Solo Physics Education Researc... thread.

June 29 at 9:23 AM EST
Geoff Potvin posted Proposed PERTG Bylaw change to ease PERLOC nominations to the US - AAPT Physics Education Researc... thread.

June 18 at 11:13 PM EST
Steve Maier posted NOTICE: PER Central Power Outage TOMORROW MORNING, 19 June to the US - Solo Physics Education Researc... thread.

June 13 at 5:39 AM EST
Steve Maier posted PERC 2020 to the US - Solo Physics Education Researc... thread.