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Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves
written by Andrew J. Berger
A robust grasp of electromagnetic (EM) plane waves is helpful for studying advanced Optics topics such as reflection, interference, and the wavelength dependence of refractive index.  Although there have been many studies of students' understanding of waves, only a small fraction have been dedicated to plane waves, which are particularly challenging both conceptually and mathematically.  In this study, nine upper-level science/engineering majors were prompted to explain how a provided mathematical representation of an EM plane wave dictated something conceptually planar.  An unexpected initial finding is that students' initial responses always went outside the realm of the prompt: they either focused on aspects of the mathematics that were unrelated to planes, or they relied upon outside information to make the connection to planes.  This revealed difficulty in blending the conceptual and mathematical representations.
Physics Education Research Conference 2015
Part of the PER Conference series
College Park, MD: July 29-30, 2015
Pages 63-66
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Basic Research
- Cognition
- Learning Theory
= Representations
Electricity & Magnetism
- Electromagnetic Radiation
Optics
- Geometrical Optics
Oscillations & Waves
- Wave Motion
= Transverse Pulses and Waves
- Upper Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
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- PER Literature
- Researchers
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Format:
application/pdf
Mirror:
https://doi.org/10.1119/perc.2015…
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.2015.pr.011
NSF Number:
1240277
PACSs:
01.40.Fk
01.40.Gb
41.20.Jb
Keyword:
PERC 2015
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created December 16, 2015 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
December 17, 2015 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
December 18, 2015
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Record Link
AIP Format
A. Berger, , presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2015, College Park, MD, 2015, WWW Document, (https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254).
AJP/PRST-PER
A. Berger, Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2015, College Park, MD, 2015, <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254>.
APA Format
Berger, A. (2015, July 29-30). Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2015, College Park, MD. Retrieved August 8, 2022, from https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254
Chicago Format
Berger, Andrew. "Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2015, College Park, MD, July 29-30, 2015. https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254 (accessed 8 August 2022).
MLA Format
Berger, Andrew. "Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves." Physics Education Research Conference 2015. College Park, MD: 2015. 63-66 of PER Conference. 8 Aug. 2022 <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Andrew Berger", Title = {Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2015}, Pages = {63-66}, Address = {College Park, MD}, Series = {PER Conference}, Month = {July 29-30}, Year = {2015} }
Refer Export Format

%A Andrew Berger %T Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves %S PER Conference %D July 29-30 2015 %P 63-66 %C College Park, MD %U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254 %O Physics Education Research Conference 2015 %O July 29-30 %O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings %A Berger, Andrew %D July 29-30 2015 %T Interviews with Upper-Level Undergraduates about Representations of Electromagnetic Plane Waves %B Physics Education Research Conference 2015 %C College Park, MD %P 63-66 %S PER Conference %8 July 29-30 %U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=13836&DocID=4254


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