NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1024162
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Sep
Pages: 1
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
High School Physics, Two-Year Colleges, and Physics Majors
White, Susan C.
Physics Teacher, v51 n6 p350 Sep 2013
We have just completed the data collection for our 2012-13 Nationwide Survey of High School Physics and expect to have results to report in the spring. In the interim, we will take a look at physics in two-year colleges (TYCs). In 2007, we surveyed undergraduate seniors in degree-granting physics departments, and we asked these students if they had begun the post-secondary career at a TYC. Nine percent of the physics undergraduate seniors in 2007 had started their college education at a TYC, and these students differ significantly from those who did not start at a TYC. The two graphs at right depict the high school physics experience for these two groups of students. More than one-fourth of those who started at a TYC did not take physics in high school, and only 18% took AP physics. The 6% of those who did not start at a TYC and did not take physics is consistent with the 5% of high school seniors who attend a school where physics is not offered. Their apparent difference of interest in physics in high school is also evident from their knowledge about AP physics offerings: 25% of those who started at a TYC did not know if AP physics was offered at their high school versus only 5% of those who did not start at a TYC. Since their high school physics experiences were so different, it is likely that something happened in their physics courses at the TYC that captured these students' interest in physics.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Journal Articles
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education; Two Year Colleges; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A