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Abstract Title: Centering and marginalization in introductory university physics courses
Abstract: Research-based instructional strategies in physics promote active participation in collaborative activities as a primary means for students to construct understanding. This emphasis is in line with situated learning theory, in which learning is indicated by a student's increasing centrality in a community. In both perspectives, to learn more is to engage more centrally: to start discussions, conduct experiments, write on the board, decide when a question has been answered, and so on. In a study of small-group collaborative learning activities in introductory physics classrooms at four different universities, we observe that as students engage with one another and with instructors, they are not only negotiating physics concepts, but also negotiating social positioning. Some students are centered (and their contributions are valued), while others are marginalized (and their contributions are neglected). The aim of this research is to become conscious of how centering and marginalization shape the way physics is taught and learned.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation
Session Time: Poster Session III
Poster Number: 3.J4
Contributed Paper Record: Contributed Paper Information
Contributed Paper Download: Download Contributed Paper

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Rachel E Scherr
University of Washington, Bothell
Bothell, WA 98011
Phone: 2066617501
and Co-Presenter(s)
W. Tali Hairston, Equitable Development LLC
Sarah B. McKagan, Alder Science Education Association