Monday, December 6, 2010

Re: Is Physics Difficult? understanding acceleration, etc...”

Some blog followers may be interested in a recent post "Re: Is Physics Difficult? understanding acceleration, etc..." [Hake (2010)]. The abstract reads:


ABSTRACT: Jatila van der Veen, in her post "Re: Is Physics Difficult? understanding acceleration, etc..." wrote: "To see whether students understand a concept, try having them DRAW their interpretation of a concept such as acceleration, and write a short explanation of their drawing."

Better yet, try having students *operationally* define kinematic terms such as position, velocity, and acceleration by means of drawings as in "Socratic Dialogue Inducing" (SDI) Labs . My experience has been that such student endeavor requires extensive guidance supplied by (a) the SDI lab manual, (b) fellow students during collaborative discussion, and (c) the Socratic instructor in response to students' questions or lab manual entries.

Thus SDI labs, as most other constructivist-type "Interactive Engagement" methods are *not* "minimally guided," an appellation applied by Kirschner, Sweller, & Clark KSC (2006) to "constructivist, discovery, problem-based, experiential, and inquiry-based teaching." KSC then proclaimed them all to be failures, contrary to the mountain of evidence for their success relative to traditional methods of instruction.


To access the complete 14 kB post please click on .

Richard Hake, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Indiana University

Honorary Member, Curmudgeon Lodge of Deventer, The Netherlands

President, PEdants for Definitive Academic References which Recognize the of the Internet (PEDARRII)>

"When we say force is the cause of motion we talk metaphysics, and this definition, if we were content with it, would be absolutely sterile. For a definition to be of any use, it must teach us to *measure* force; moreover, that suffices; it is not at all necessary that it teach us what force is *in itself*, nor whether it is the cause or the effect of motion."

Henri Poincare (1905) [My *emphasis*.]

REFERENCES [All URL's shortened by and accessed on 5 December 2010.]

Hake, R.R. "Re: Is Physics Difficult? understanding acceleration, etc..." online on the OPEN! AERA-L archives at . Post of 5 Dec 2010 19:58:35-0800 to AERA-L, Net-Gold, & PhysLrnR. The abstract and link to the complete post are being distributed to various discussion lists.

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