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Learning Attitudes of Under-Represented Students in College Physics . Yianna Fantrazzo Dr. Daniel MacIsaac, State University of New York College at Buffalo. Main Purpose:. Explore the learning attitudes of students in the college physics course :

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learning attitudes of under represented students in college physics

Learning Attitudes of Under-Represented Studentsin College Physics

Yianna Fantrazzo Dr. Daniel MacIsaac,

State University of New York College at Buffalo

main purpose
Main Purpose:

Explore the learning attitudes of students in the college physics course :

  • Observe if there are any differences among students of different levels of study (i.e. freshman, senior)
  • Investigate any similarities between student with similar characteristics based on specific focusing identifiers.
literature review
Literature Review:
  • Pupils\' attitudes towards science as they progressed through secondary school declines, and the decline is more pronounced for female pupils (Barmby, 2008).
  • Attitude changes are effected by experiences in and outside of the classroom setting (Hazari, 2007)
literature review con t
Literature review con’t.

In similar studies (Perkins, 2005):

  • positive correlations between particular student beliefs and conceptual learning gains
  • positive correlations between student retention and favorable beliefs in select categories.
literature review con t1
Literature Review con’t.

In a study at the University of California, San Diego show (Gire,2007):

  • All years of physics majors have more prior knowledge thank non-physics major students.
  • The first three years of majors are less expert-like than graduate students
  • The students in the fourth year of the major are comparable to graduate students.
focusing characteristics
Focusing Characteristics
  • Area of study
  • Year of study
  • Gender
  • Age
  • Ethnicity
  • Employment
  • Dependants
methods
Methods

Colorado Learning Attitudes of Students Survey (CLASS):

  • 42 Multiple choice evaluating the students perception of personal learning style and their attitude relating to the content
  • Plus 6 questions in order to group and identify student characteristics
examples
Examples

To understand physics I discuss it with friends and other students.

Strongly Disagree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Agree

It is possible to explain physics ideas without mathematical formulas.

Strongly Disagree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Agree

methods con t
Methods con’t.

Interviews:

  • 1-2 students volunteers in each class to provide another assessment of students’ perception.
participants
Participants
  • Approx.120 non-calculus based introductory physics students.
  • Approx. 80-100 calculus based introductory physics students
  • Approx. 30-50 upper level physics students
  • Approx. 60 graduate physics students
interviews
Interviews
  • 10 Under-represented student, 2-3 in every class
  • Offering a second assessment of the attitudes of the students.
analysis tentative results
Analysis/ tentative results

Data will be analyzed in the September using the same tool used in previous CLASS studies.

The analysis tool scores student responses in seven categories.

analysis tentative results con t
Analysis/ tentative results con’t.

The 7 scoring categories:

Sense making

Meta-cognition

How to learn

Coherence.

  • Reality personal view
  • Reality world view
  • Math
conclusion
Conclusion
  • Student overall attitudes of physics may be affected by characteristics of the student
  • Student learning attitudes may change as students progress from year to year of study.
references
References

Barmby, P. K. (2008). Examining changing attitudes in secondary school science. International Journal of Science Education , 1075-1093.

Gire, E. P. (2007). Characterizing the Epistemological Development of Physics Majors. AIP Conference Proceedings , 65-68.

Hazari, Z. T. (2007). Gender differences in introductory university physics performance: The influence of high school physics preparation and affective factors. Science Education , 847-876.

Perkins, K. A. (2005). Correlating Student beliefs with Students Learning Using The Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey. AIP Conference Proceedings , 61-64.

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