AAPT Abstract Archive

Abstract Information

  Session: K-12 PER
  Paper Type: Contributed
  Title: Gender and Context Choice Influence on Student Performance and Attitude
  Meeting: 2017 Summer Meeting: Cincinnati, Ohio
  Location: N/A
  Time: 3:10PM
  Author: Samuel Wheeler,, North Carolina State University,
9196223308, srwheele@ncsu.edu
  Co-Author(s): Margaret Blanchard
  Abstract: This study investigates the role that student choice and gender stereotypes have on student interests, beliefs, conceptual understanding, and motivation toward learning physics in a high school unit on Newton’s Laws. Seventy four student participants in high school physics classes, from five U.S. states, took part in this study. WebAssign homework problems were designed to investigate whether the context of a physics question, based on gender preferences, will influence students’ choices. Three question contexts were used: traditional physics, biological health, and sports. Students were given a pre post Force Concept Inventory to evaluate conceptual knowledge, and a pre/post CLASS survey to measure changes in attitudes. Female participants showed greater gains in conceptual understanding compared with males and showed improvements in sense making and applying conceptual understanding. The findings suggest that given a choice of context, students are more engaged and interested in the physics and show growth in understanding the concepts.
  Footnotes: None
  Presentation: Wheeler AAPT Ohio 2017.pptx

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