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“I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics
written by Brianne Gutmann, Egla Ochoa-Madrid, and Alice R. Olmstead
Physics has greatly impacted society, both in solving problems and perpetuating harm. Yet we rarely train physics students to grapple with their responsibilities to society by facilitating conversations about ethical issues. We developed and collected classroom video of a unit on the development of the atomic bomb. Here, we analyze a set of students' small group interactions to reveal factors that enable and limit their engagement. Enabling factors include: (a) curricular materials that elicit students' opinions, (b) opportunities for students to push each other to engage with the content, and (c) instructor facilitation that further pushes and validates student reasoning. Limiting factors include: (a) students' discomfort around inexperience with ethical reasoning in physics, (b) students' anticipation of their lack of agency in the physics community, and (c) students' projections of their lack of agency in a historical context due to their race and gender. We consider the implications of these factors for instruction.
Physics Education Research Conference 2020
Part of the PER Conference series
Virtual Conference: July 22-23, 2020
Pages 191-197
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Applied Research
- Active Learning
= Cooperative Learning
Education - Basic Research
- Behavior
= Social Interaction
- Societal Issues
- Student Characteristics
= Affect
General Physics
- History
- Philosophy
- Upper Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
PER-Central Type Intended Users Ratings
- PER Literature
- Researchers
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Format:
application/pdf
Mirror:
https://doi.org/10.1119/perc.2020…
Access Rights:
Free access
License:
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 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.2020.pr.Gutmann
Keyword:
PERC 2020
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created August 27, 2020 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
September 1, 2020 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
September 1, 2020

2020 PERC Notable Paper

Author: Lyle
Posted: May 4, 2021 at 4:44PM

This paper was one of four 2020 PERC Proceedings papers selected as notable by PERLOC and the Notable Papers subcommittee.

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Record Link
AIP Format
B. Gutmann, E. Ochoa-Madrid, and A. Olmstead, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2020, Virtual Conference, 2020, WWW Document, (https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330).
AJP/PRST-PER
B. Gutmann, E. Ochoa-Madrid, and A. Olmstead, “I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics, presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2020, Virtual Conference, 2020, <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330>.
APA Format
Gutmann, B., Ochoa-Madrid, E., & Olmstead, A. (2020, July 22-23). “I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics. Paper presented at Physics Education Research Conference 2020, Virtual Conference. Retrieved May 7, 2021, from https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330
Chicago Format
Gutmann, B, E. Ochoa-Madrid, and A. Olmstead. "“I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics." Paper presented at the Physics Education Research Conference 2020, Virtual Conference, July 22-23, 2020. https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330 (accessed 7 May 2021).
MLA Format
Gutmann, Brianne, Egla Ochoa-Madrid, and Alice R. Olmstead. "“I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics." Physics Education Research Conference 2020. Virtual Conference: 2020. 191-197 of PER Conference. 7 May 2021 <https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330>.
BibTeX Export Format
@inproceedings{ Author = "Brianne Gutmann and Egla Ochoa-Madrid and Alice R. Olmstead", Title = {“I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics}, BookTitle = {Physics Education Research Conference 2020}, Pages = {191-197}, Address = {Virtual Conference}, Series = {PER Conference}, Month = {July 22-23}, Year = {2020} }
Refer Export Format

%A Brianne Gutmann
%A Egla Ochoa-Madrid
%A Alice R. Olmstead
%T "I'm not that important": Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics
%S PER Conference
%D July 22-23 2020
%P 191-197
%C Virtual Conference
%U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330
%O Physics Education Research Conference 2020
%O July 22-23
%O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Conference Proceedings
%A Gutmann, Brianne
%A Ochoa-Madrid, Egla
%A Olmstead, Alice R.
%D July 22-23 2020
%T "I'm not that important": Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics
%B Physics Education Research Conference 2020
%C Virtual Conference
%P 191-197
%S PER Conference
%8 July 22-23
%U https://www.compadre.org/Repository/document/ServeFile.cfm?ID=15482&DocID=5330


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The AIP Style presented is based on information from the AIP Style Manual.

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“I’m not that important”: Barriers and bolsters to student agency during conversations about the intersections of physics and ethics:


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