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Active Learning for Physics (Electromagnetism) Teachers in an Engineering Course

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Engineering Physics & Physics Division Technical Session 4

Tagged Division

Engineering Physics & Physics

Tagged Topic


Page Count


Page Numbers

26.147.1 - 26.147.11



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Paper Authors


Rodrigo Cutri P.E. Centro Universitário do Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia

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Cutri holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Maua Institute of Technology (2001), MSc (2004) and Ph.D. (2007) in Electrical Engineering - University of São Paulo. He is currently Titular Professor of Maua Institute of Technology, Professor of the University Center Foundation Santo André, and consultant - Tecap Electrical Industry Ltda. He has experience in Electrical Engineering with emphasis on Industrial Electronics and Engineering Education, acting on the following topics: power electronics and active learning.

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Demetrio Elie Baracat Centro Universitário do Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia

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Mechanical Engineer, PhD and MSc in Engineering from EPUSP - Brazil, Post-graduate in Accounting & Financial Management and in General Management from Getúlio Vargas Foundation of São Paulo (FGV-SP).Teacher at Centro Universitário do Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia - São Paulo - Brazil in the disciplines Calculus II and Evaluation and Selection of Heat Exchange Equipment. Co-chairman in Academic SAE Brazil Congress

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Luiz Roberto Marim Centro Universitário do Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia

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Graduated in Bachelor of Mathematics by the Foundation University Center Saint Andrew (1985), Graduate Degree in Physics from the University of Taubaté (2000), master's degree in Physics from the Technological Institute of Aeronautics (2002) and a PhD in Physics from the Technological Institute of Aeronautics (2006). I am currently associate professor of Maua Technology Institute and collaborator professor at the Institute of Aeronautical Technology (ITA), acting on the following topics: silicon, genetic algorithm, artificial neural networks and physical Olympics.

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Francisco Mauro Witkowski Centro Universitário do Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia

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Graduation in Physics - Universidade de São Paulo - 1969
Master in Physics - USP - 1972
Ph.D. in Physics - Instituto de Física Teórica IFT - 1976
Professor - Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia since 1988

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The use of Active-learning for teachers of Physics (Electromagnetism) in an Engineering Course ABSTRACTThe students of Engineering have presented difficulties in the assimilation of the conceptsexplored in Electromagnetism and Waves. These difficulties begin with the lack of abstraction,especially when the study of concepts of Electromagnetism. Many active learning methodologiesand cases are presented in the literature for Classical Mechanics but there are few references forElectromagnetism and Waves. This paper presents a PBL-Problem Based Learning and a ProjectBased Learning practice applied in large students class (25 students each one) replicated for athousand students universe in an annual University Physics Class. In Problem Based Learningapproach, four students teams works received, each semester, contextualized scripts (withproblems were they must do simulations and conceptual analysis) (see example on appendix) andat the end of each semester they must present theirs results in an oral presentation and do an oralevaluation test. In Project Based Learning approach, the same team at the end of academic yearmust do a final open project using electromagnetics concepts (project, construct and evaluate anelectromagnetic crane with open specifications) and participate of a competition. Thepedagogical process of active learning development were used to allow students have betterunderstanding of the physical phenomenon, in addition to scientific thought for a suitablemodeling, simulation and analysis, without only doing mathematical deductions if nounderstanding of Real Physics. The evaluation of the proposed learning process was done by asurvey with closed and open questions applied to students at the end of the semester, wherestudents, in a blind process, had the opportunity to evaluate how the proposed activities allowachieve better understanding of physical concepts, if has increase motivation for engineering, ifthe amount of time to solve problems was adequate, if the support provided to the developmentof the work (infrastructure and service teachers) was used and made suggestions forimprovement. This survey answers shows that the perception of understanding increase,approximately 70% of students approved the new pedagogical proposal and retention ratesdecrease by 10%. The same idea can be easily replied in others engineering schools adaptingcontextualized scripts.REFERENCESBaracat,D.; Witkowski,F.M.; Cutri,R. Problem Based Learning in Multivariable Differential andIntegral Calculus for engineering course. 11th ACTIVE LEARNING IN ENGINEERINGWORKSHOP. Copenhagen, Denmark. June 20-22 2012Case, J. Education Theories on Learning: an informal guide for engineering education scholar.The Higher Education Academy UK Centre for Materials Education, 2008De Graaff,E.; Kolmos, A. Characteristics of Problem-Based Learning. Int. J. Engng Ed. Vol. 19,No. 5, pp. 657-662, 2003Du.X; De Graaff,E.; Kolmos, A. Research on PBL Practice in Engineering Education. SensePublishers. 2008 APPENDIX 5º SCRIPTLearning Objectives• Explore the magnetic field applicationsThe group was invited to meet a special project, the project of a High Speed Train (Maglev). Onentering the development of special projects room, were welcomed by the general manager of theproject. After the explanation of the project, could visualize the 3D virtual model of theMAGLEV and learn details of the construction of the train and the control module. A phrase inthe living room wall caught their attention: "No brain, no gain.". When they leave there, theywere excited because they had assisted a direct application of the concepts of electromagnetismthey had learned in Brazil. Also reminded that the Brazilian government plans to build a high-speed train linking Rio de Janeiro to São Paulo. Source: Watch a video on youtube about Maglev.2) Visit the film prepared at: - Copyright ©1991, 1996 By the UC Regents. Explain physically what happened in each film.3) Demonstrate mathematically Biot-Savart Law in a rectangular conductor loop format andcalculate the magnetic field at its center.4) In the following situations, using simulations arranged: (Copyright MIT TEAL / Studio PhysicsProject), presents a graphic display of the screen and explain physically what happened with:a) magnetic forces between parallel conductors carrying currents in the same direction;b) magnetic forces between parallel conductors carrying current in opposite directions;

Cutri, R., & Baracat, D. E., & Marim, L. R., & Witkowski, F. M. (2015, June), Active Learning for Physics (Electromagnetism) Teachers in an Engineering Course Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23486

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