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PERC 2013 Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: Doing Science or Doing a Lab? Engaging Students With Scientific Reasoning During Physics Lab Experiments
Abstract: Sensemaking during an experiment, such as reflecting and evaluating, is entwined with issues of affect. For example, students may weigh the relative importance of taking in-class time to reflect on activities versus leaving the class early. These decisions often reflect a distinction between their epistemological framing of "doing a lab" and "doing science." This study examines how students reflect during an experiment that involves two common systematic errors. While many students reflected on their results and found the source of the larger systematic errors, very few did so for the smaller one. In fact, for the latter case, many students retroactively increased their initial uncertainties to compensate for the final discrepancy, effectively hiding the systematic inaccuracy altogether. We use these results, in-class observations, and post-lab interviews to propose new classroom practices to shift students' framing in the lab towards doing science and away from doing a lab.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Natasha Holmes
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of British Columbia
6224 Agricultural Road
Vancouver, Canada, Non U.S. V6T 1Z1
Phone: 7783217021
and Co-Presenter(s)
Natasha Holmes and Doug Bonn

Department of Physics and Astronomy
University of British Columbia

Contributed Poster

Contributed Poster: Download the Contributed Poster