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Abstract Title: Model-based reasoning during electronics and optics lab activities: Instructor perspectives
Abstract: Conducting physics experiments requires constructing, using, and revising theoretical models and physical apparatuses, a nonlinear and recursive process we call "modeling." Developing proficiency with modeling was identified as an important learning outcome for undergraduate physics lab courses by both AAPT and faculty members at our home institution. Our long-term goal is to create educational materials that will support lab instructors to develop their students' modeling skills. To this end, we have previously studied students' approaches to completing experimental physics activities. However, instructor perspectives are also needed to build a comprehensive foundation for future development of useful and relevant educational materials. Accordingly, we interviewed 31 instructors from 24 distinct institutions about specific electronics and optics lab activities. Interviews focused on how those activities were designed to engage students in some aspects of modeling, but not others. We report results from this study and discuss implications for the development of objectives for modeling assessments.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Dimitri R. Dounas-Frazer
University of Colorado Boulder
Department of Physics 390 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309-0390
Phone: 303-862-0337
and Co-Presenter(s)
Jacob T. Stanley, University of Colorado Boulder
H. J. Lewandowski, University of Colorado Boulder and JILA