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ERIC Number: EJ874153
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 14
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1094-3277
Gravity, Magnetism, and "Down": Non-Physics College Students' Conceptions of Gravity
Asghar, Anila; Libarkin, Julie C.
Science Educator, v19 n1 p42-55 Spr 2010
This study investigates how students enrolled in entry-level geology, most of whom would graduate from college without university-level physics courses, thought about and applied the concept of gravity while solving problems concerning gravity. The repercussions of students' gravity concepts are then considered in the context of non-physics courses, including implications for reform efforts in physics. Data were collected during the second week of an eleven-week term from two courses with an average enrollment of just over 100 students. Based on research literature (Claxton, 1993; diSessa, 1983; Vosniadou, 1994) and one author's experience of teaching this population of students, the authors hypothesized that students would have fragmented and loosely connected ideas about gravity. Findings, implications, and limitations of this study are discussed. (Contains 3 tables and 4 figures.)
National Science Education Leadership Association. P.O. Box 99381, Raleigh, NC 27624-9381. Tel: 919-848-8171; Fax: 919-848-0496; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A