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Abstract Title: Student Response to Instruction: When and How Much?
Abstract: In the physics education research community, a common format for evaluation is pre- and post-tests. At The Ohio State University, we take advantage of our large class sizes by collecting more frequent data points. The data cover the first two quarters (mechanics, E&M) of a calculus-based introductory sequence populated primarily by first- and second-year engineering majors. Different subpopulations of students are evaluated every week of the quarter using a variety of conceptual and procedural tasks related to different topics in the curriculum. Unsurprisingly for a traditional introductory course, there is little change on many conceptual questions. However, some student ideas peak and decay during a quarter, a pattern expected from memory research yet unpredicted by pre-/post-testing.  In addition, some correct ideas decrease dramatically when newer topics interfere with prior knowledge.   This research is partially supported by a grant from the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education (#R305H050125).
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster
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Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Eleanor C Sayre
Ohio State University
191 W Woodruff Ave
Columbus, OH 43201
and Co-Presenter(s)
Andrew F Heckler, Ohio State University, heckler.6 -at- osu.edu