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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

PER Programs

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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

Energy Concept Assessment

Energy Concept Assessment
The Energy Concept Assessment, developed by Lin Ding, is designed to evaluate students' conceptual understanding of energy in algebra- or calculus-based introductory physics courses.

Find more assessment instruments

PER Events PER-Central Announcements RSS

Physics Education Research Conference 2018
PERC 2018 will be held August 1-2, 2018 in Washington, DC.  The theme will be "Having Wonderful Ideas: Connecting the Content, Outcomes, and Pedagogies of Physics."

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Latest Additions Latest Additions to PER-Central RSS

Jul 21 Selection, Generalization, and Theories of Cause in Physics Education Research: Connecting Paradigms and Practices
Jul 21 Research in the Resources Framework: Changing environments, consistent exploration
Jul 21 The Roles of Engagement: Network Analysis in Physics Education Research
Jul 21 Identifying and Addressing Difficulties: Reflections on the empirical and theoretical basis of an influential approach to improving physics education

Latest Discussion Posts

June 29 at 12:18 PM EST
Steve Maier posted Summer 2018 AAPT Meeting to the US - Solo Physics Education Researc... thread.

June 27 at 10:43 AM EST
Mel Sabella posted Webinars on Policy and Advocacy available from AAPT to the US - AAPT Physics Education Researc... thread.

November 29 at 7:55 PM EST
Jacob Turner posted Re: Re: Help with Keywords to the US - Solo Physics Education Researc... thread.

November 29 at 6:49 PM EST
Steve Maier posted Re: Help with Keywords to the US - Solo Physics Education Researc... thread.