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Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory
written by Dehui Hu and Benjamin M. Zwickl
We investigated students' epistemological views of physics with a specific focus on physics laboratory work. The roles of experiments in physics have been underemphasized in previous epistemology research and there is a need for a broad view of epistemology that systematically incorporates experiments into discussions about the structure, methodology, and validity of scientific knowledge. An epistemological framework incorporating these features guided the development of an open-ended survey, which was administered to students in algebra-based and calculus-based introductory physics courses, an upper-division physics lab, as well as to physics Ph.D. students. We identified several differences in students' epistemological views of physics. Regarding the roles of experiments in physics courses, introductory students viewed experiments as supplemental tools for conceptual learning and problem solving, while higher-level students valued unique things experiments provide, including experiments as opportunities to emphasize the empirical nature of physics and the development of scientific and professional skills. Regarding views on the relationship between theory and experiment, introductory students heavily emphasized experiment testing theory. However, higher-level students recognized a holistic cyclical relationship: experiment inspires theory, theory guides experiment, experiment tests theory, and theory explains experiment.
Physics Education Research Conference 2017
Part of the PER Conference Juried Paper series
Cincinnati, OH: July 26-27, 2017
Pages 11-14
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Basic Research
- Assessment
= Methods
- Cognition
= Cognition Development
- Student Characteristics
= Affect
- Lower Undergraduate
- Graduate/Professional
- Upper Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
PER-Central Type Intended Users Ratings
- PER Literature
- Researchers
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Format:
application/pdf
Mirror:
https://doi.org/10.1119/perc.2017…
Access Rights:
Free access
License:
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the published article's author(s), title, proceedings citation, and DOI.
Rights Holder:
American Association of Physics Teachers
DOI:
10.1119/perc.2017.juried.003
NSF Number:
1432301
Keyword:
PERC 2017
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created March 1, 2018 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
March 2, 2018 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
March 1, 2018
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AIP Format
D. Hu and B. Zwickl, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2017, Cincinnati, OH, 2017, WWW Document, (https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857).
AJP/PRST-PER
D. Hu and B. Zwickl, Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2017, Cincinnati, OH, 2017, <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857>.
APA Format
Hu, D., & Zwickl, B. (2017, July 26-27). Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2017, Cincinnati, OH. Retrieved January 27, 2021, from https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857
Chicago Format
Hu, Dehui, and Benjamin Zwickl. "Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2017, Cincinnati, OH, July 26-27, 2017. https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857 (accessed 27 January 2021).
MLA Format
Hu, Dehui, and Benjamin Zwickl. "Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory." Physics Education Research Conference 2017. Cincinnati, OH: 2017. 11-14 of PER Conference Juried Paper. 27 Jan. 2021 <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Dehui Hu and Benjamin Zwickl", Title = {Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2017}, Pages = {11-14}, Address = {Cincinnati, OH}, Series = {PER Conference Juried Paper}, Month = {July 26-27}, Year = {2017} }
Refer Export Format

%A Dehui Hu
%A Benjamin Zwickl
%T Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory
%S PER Conference Juried Paper
%D July 26-27 2017
%P 11-14
%C Cincinnati, OH
%U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2017
%O July 26-27
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Hu, Dehui
%A Zwickl, Benjamin
%D July 26-27 2017
%T Examining students' personal epistemology: the role of physics experiments and relation with theory
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2017
%C Cincinnati, OH
%P 11-14
%S PER Conference Juried Paper
%8 July 26-27
%U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=14680&DocID=4857


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