ERIC Number: ED453078
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2000-Dec
Students' Experiences of Understanding University Physics.
Waterhouse, Fiona; Prosser, Michael
Previous research in the field of student learning in higher education has mostly focused on conceptual issues of students at the individual concept or task level. There has been little research of students' conceptions of whole subjects, and virtually no previous research of students' feelings of their conceptual experiences. This paper aims to analyze students' experiences of studying a whole subject and their feelings associated with those experiences. The sample consisted of two interviews with twenty-four first year university physics students. In analyzing students' experiences, two related methodological approaches were used. The first phase of analysis adopted a phenomenographic approach, resulting in the development of categories of description of the variation within students' meaning of understanding. The second phase of the analysis adopted a metaphoric approach, where the variation within students' feelings associated with their meanings of understanding were analyzed. In this paper, the authors present the set of categories of description they developed to describe the variation in the way students conceive of understanding. In presenting these categories of description, the discussion will point towards the (Contains 24 references and 3 tables.) (Author/ASK)
Descriptors: Cognitive Processes, Concept Formation, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Learning, Metaphors, Physics, Student Experience
For full text: http://www.aare.edu.au/00pup/wat00345.htm.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Australian Association for Research in Education (Sydney, Australia, December 4-7, 2000). Document contains small print.