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PERC 2018 Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: Connecting Physics Students’ Conceptual Understanding to Symbolic Forms s Using a Conceptual Blending Framework
Abstract: Much of physics involves the construction and interpretation of equations. Research on students' mathematics understanding has employed Sherin's symbolic forms or Fauconnier and Turner's conceptual blending as analytical frameworks. However, previous symbolic forms analyses have commonly conflated students' in-context understanding with their conceptual schema, which was designed to represent the acontextual mathematical justification of the symbol template (externalized structure of the expression). Furthermore, conceptual blending analyses have not included a generic space to specify the underlying structure of a math-physics blend. We combine these frameworks in a model for students' construction of equations that uses the conceptual schema as the generic space and that frames the blending of symbol template and conceptual understanding. This combination complements symbolic forms analysis with contextual meaning and provides an underlying structure for the analysis of student understanding of equations. We apply this model to student construction of non-Cartesian differential length vectors.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation
Session Time: Poster Session III
Poster Number: C81

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Benjamin Schermerhorn
University of Maine
University of Maine
5709 Bennett Hall
Orono, ME 04469
Phone: 3157291213
and Co-Presenter(s)
John R. Thompson, University of Maine