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Abstract Title: Exploring Student Thinking on Non-Cartesian Coordinate Systems
Abstract: As part of a larger effort to develop a research-based math methods curriculum for undergraduate physics students, results from a case study probing student thinking on plane and spherical polar coordinates are presented. Using a resources framework, a think-aloud protocol was used to elicit student thinking regarding non-Cartesian coordinates. Findings are consistent with previously published literature regarding student thinking on coordinate systems. Mark, a senior physics major, despite initially clearly identifying and defining the radial and polar unit vectors on one problem, made inconsistent assertion when asked to apply the concept of position vectors in polar and spherical coordinates.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Warren Christensen
North Dakota State University
513 9th Ave N
Fargo, ND 58102
Phone: 3193892697
and Co-Presenter(s)
Brian Farlow, North Dakota State University
Michael Loverude, California State - Fullerton
Marlene Vega, California State - Fullerton