ERIC Number: ED407259
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
The Process of Conceptual Change in 'Force and Motion'.
Tao, Ping-Kee; Gunstone, Richard F.
The process of students' conceptual change was evaluated during a computer-supported physics unit in a Grade 10 science class. Computer simulation programs were developed to confront students' alternative conceptions in mechanics. A conceptual test was administered as pre-, post-, and delayed post-tests to determine students' conceptual change. Students worked collaboratively in pairs on the programs carrying out predict-observe-explain tasks according to worksheets. While the pairs worked on the tasks, their conversational interactions were recorded. A range of other data were collected at various junctures during instruction. At each juncture, data for each of 12 students were analyzed to provide a "conceptual snapshot" at that particular juncture. All conceptual snapshots together provided a delineation of the students' conceptual development. Many students vacillated between alternative and scientific conceptions from one context to another during instruction; i.e., their conceptual change was context-dependent and unstable. The few students that achieved long-term conceptual change appeared to be able to perceive commonalities and accept the generality of scientific conceptions across contexts. These findings led to a tentative model of conceptual change. The paper concludes with consequent implications for classroom teaching. Contains 51 references. (Author/PVD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia