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ERIC Number: EJ1094572
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Pages: 5
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-9120
Using Categorization of Problems as an Instructional Tool to Help Introductory Students Learn Physics
Mason, Andrew; Singh, Chandralekha
Physics Education, v51 n2 Article 025009 Mar 2016
The ability to categorize problems based upon underlying principles, rather than contexts, is considered a hallmark of expertise in physics problem solving. With inspiration from a classic study by Chi, Feltovich, and Glaser, we compared the categorization of 25 introductory mechanics problems based upon similarity of solution by students in large calculus-based introductory courses with physics faculty and PhD students. Here, we summarize the study and suggest that a categorization task, especially when conducted with students working with peers in small groups, can be an effective pedagogical tool to help students in introductory physics courses learn to discern the underlying similarity between problems with diverse contexts but the same underlying physics principles.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: PHY1505460