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PERC 2012 Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: Considering factors beyond transfer of knowledge across disciplines
Abstract: One thread in education research has been to investigate whether and in what ways students "transfer" their knowledge and use of particular concepts across disciplinary contexts . Such studies typically focus on the content of students' knowledge.  For example, some studies investigate whether students who apply some knowledge in problem solving in a mathematical context can transfer that knowledge to solving a similarly structured physics problem.  We argue that in order to understand students' reasoning across disciplinary contexts, we need to attend not just to their content knowledge, but also to their views on knowledge and learning (or epistemologies) in the disciplines.  We present the case of Will, a student working with two Taylor series approximation problems that were chosen to cue experiences from either math or physics. We aim to show that focusing on Will's epistemology aids our understanding of why he might reason differently across the two contexts.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Eric Kuo
University of Maryland, College Park
and Co-Presenter(s)
Danielle Champney, University of California, Berkeley
Angela Little, University of California, Berkeley