Hake, R.R. 2008. "Understanding Motion: Even Newton and Berkeley Physics Professors Have Had Trouble," online at http://tinyurl.com/5lk3x2 . Post of 16 October to AP-Physics, Phys-L, and PhysLrnR.
ABSTRACT: John Mallinckrodt (2008), in a recent PhysLrnR* post called attention to his 2002 Phys-L post "Re: Kinematics First," in which he wrote: "Newton himself didn't understand acceleration." In addition: (a) Steinberg, Brown, & Clement (1990) have shown that Newton encountered conceptual difficulties which were difficult for him to overcome before he wrote the Principia, and (b) Reif (1995) reported that Berkeley physics professors have had trouble with the concept of acceleration.
* PhysLrnR is a Physics Learning Research discussion list with archives at http://listserv.boisestate.edu/archives/physlrnr.html . To access the archives one needs to subscribe, but that takes only a few minutes by clicking on the aforementioned URL and then clicking on "Join or leave the list (or change settings)." If you're busy, then subscribe using the "NOMAIL" option under "Miscellaneous." Then, as a subscriber, you may access the archives and/or post messages at any time, while receiving NO MAIL from the list! The powerful PhysLrnR search engine at http://listserv.boisestate/edu/cgi-bin/wa?S1=physlrnr&X=- allows searches by subject, keyword, author, date, or any combination of those.