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Abstract Title: “So it’s the same equation...”: A blending analysis of student reasoning with functions in kinematics
Abstract: Student use of mathematics in physics is an area of current interest in both PER and the Research in Undergraduate Math Education (RUME) community.  In particular, the function concept has been widely studied in RUME but has received less attention in PER.  Using a grounded approach, this study probes introductory physics students on their ability to (1) interpret graphical representations of position vs. time functions and their corresponding derivatives and to (2) translate the graphical representation into a meaningful symbolic representation. Data were collected through think-aloud interviews and analyzed using a cognitive blending framework [Fauconnier and Turner, 2002]. We created what we believe to be an "ideal expert blend" of math and physics mental spaces against which the student responses were compared.  We focus on case studies of two students whose approaches differed and examine how blending influenced responses to a novel graphical representation.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation
Session Time: Poster Session I
Poster Number: A91
Contributed Paper Record: Contributed Paper Information
Contributed Paper Download: Download Contributed Paper

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Henry Taylor
California State University, Fullerton
Co-Author(s)
and Co-Presenter(s)
Henry Taylor, Dr. Michael Loverude

Contributed Poster

Contributed Poster: Download the Contributed Poster