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Abstract Title: Revealing differences between curricula using the Colorado Upper-Division Electrostatics Diagnostic
Abstract: The Colorado Upper-Division Electrostatics (CUE) Diagnostic is an exam developed as a part of the curriculum reform at the University of Colorado at Boulder. It was designed to assess student conceptual learning of the upper-division electricity and magnetism (E&M). Using the CUE we have been documenting students understanding of E&M at Oregon State University (OSU) over a period of 5 years. Our preliminary analysis indicates that the CUE identifies concepts that are generally difficult for students, regardless of the curriculum. The overall pattern of OSU students' scores reproduces the pattern in Chasteen et al. [Phys. Rev. ST PER 8, 020108 (2012)]. There are, however, some important differences that we will address. In particular, our students struggle with the CUE problems involving the separation of variables. We will discuss the possible causes for this, as well as the steps we might take to rectify the issue.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Justyna P. Zwolak
Oregon State University
Department of Physics
Weniger Hall 301
Corvallis, OR 97331
Co-Author(s)
and Co-Presenter(s)
Corinne A. Manogue, Oregon State University

Contributed Paper

Contributed Paper: Download the Contributed Paper