Instructors’ Ideas about Problem Solving – Setting Goals Documents

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Instructors’ Ideas about Problem Solving – Setting Goals 

written by Charles R. Henderson, Kenneth Heller, Patricia Heller, H. Vincent Kuo, and Edit Yerushalmi

This paper presents preliminary hypotheses about the relationship between faculty goals for the introductory calculus-based physics course and their beliefs about student learning of problem solving.  All faculty have problem solving as a major goal for their course.  There appears to be however, an instructional paradox.  When discussing how students learn to solve problems in their own courses, faculty indicate that reflective-practice skills are a necessary prerequisite, and that average students enter the course with these skills.  When discussing general problem solving skills, however, faculty seem to believe that similar reflective-practice skills cannot be learned in an introductory physics course, and should be a long-term goal of university education.

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Published July 26, 2001
Last Modified July 11, 2010

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