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ERIC Number: EJ941337
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-May
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 4
ISSN: ISSN-0031-9120
How Iron Becomes Magnetized--The Introduction of a Model of Ferromagnetism in Secondary School Physics
Waltner, Christine; Heran-Doerr, Eva; Rachel, Alexander; Wiesner, Hartmut
Physics Education, v46 n3 p259-264 May 2011
Scientists use models to describe and explain observed physical phenomena and to predict the outcomes of new phenomena. Choosing a productive model for describing or explaining a phenomenon is a routine part of the work of scientists but a rare exercise for our students. Students have difficulties understanding the meaning of the word "model" and using it to analyse physical phenomena and solve problems (Etkina "et al" 2006 "Phys. Teach". 44 S.34-9). According to previous research results, even in elementary instruction, the topic of ferromagnetism lends itself very well to looking at the meaning and function of models in the area of physics, since the "iron-magnet model" (the molecular model of magnetism) explains a multitude of observable phenomena. (Contains 9 figures and 4 footnotes.)
Institute of Physics Publishing. The Public Ledger Building Suite 929, 150 South Independence Mall West, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 215-627-0880; Fax: 215-627-0879; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A