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Abstract Title: How Freshmen Generate Evidence for Reasoning in Physics and Non-physics Tasks
Abstract: We explore undergraduate students' sources of self-generated evidence and their meta-cognition when they solve physics and non-physics questions. Our sample comprises 50 freshmen taking or having taken introductory physics. Each student participated in a one-hour interview to complete five open-ended reasoning questions taken from published instruments. Two questions are non-physics that deal with correlation of variables. The three physics questions pertain to the topic of energy. Results indicate that for the non-physics questions, the students predominantly used given information in the task as source of evidence. They realised that everyday experiences or assumptions are informal ideas and hence assigned them a less weight. For the physics questions, the students did not realise that they used informal ideas. They packaged informal knowledge in the form of formal physics knowledge. These differences may be explained by the students' ease to deal with the context of the questions and cognitive load.
Abstract Type: Juried Talk
Parallel Session: Juried Talks II
Parallel Session: Parallel Sessions Cluster III
Contributed Paper Record: Contributed Paper Information
Contributed Paper Download: Download Contributed Paper

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: B. Ibrahim
The Ohio State University, School of Teaching and Learning
and Co-Presenter(s)
L. Ding