NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ860222
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Feb
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 10
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
Energy and the Confused Student II: Systems
Jewett, John W., Jr.
Physics Teacher, v46 n2 p81-86 Feb 2008
Energy is a critical concept in physics problem-solving but is often a major source of confusion for students if the presentation is not carefully crafted by the instructor or the textbook. The first article in this series discussed student confusion generated by traditional treatments of work. In any discussion of work, it is important to state that work is done on a "system" by a force. This phrasing has two important components: (1) the identification of the force that is doing the work and (2) the identification of the recipient of the work as a "system." Very few textbook or lecture presentations use a system-based approach when performing an energy problem. The first two steps in approaching any energy problem should be: 1) Identify the system; 2) Categorize the system. [For Part I, see EJ860218.]
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: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A