June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
Engineering Physics & Physics
22.239.1 - 22.239.16
Assessing First-year Physics Mechanics Knowledge and Skills needed for a Sophomore Statics and Dynamics CourseAnecdotally, engineering faculty members complain that students taking sophomore engineeringscience courses are not prepared with respect to mechanics-based physics. However, evidencehas rarely been systematically collected and analyzed to determine the veracity of theseassertions. To begin to address this issue, the following steps were taken. First, engineeringfaculty members who taught a sophomore statics and dynamics course at a large publicuniversity were asked for problems involving first-year physics mechanics that they thoughtstudents should be able to solve when they entered this course. For each problem, one or morelearning outcomes were abstracted. Given the set of learning outcomes engineering facultymembers expected students to be able to perform, a set of 17 problems was generated to be givento students near the beginning of the statics and dynamics course. The instrument has beenadministered to a set of students who took the course summer 2010 as well as a set of studentswho took the course in fall 2010. The paper will describe: • Some of the problems that were submitted by engineering faculty members • The set of learning outcomes that was generated • The pre-course assessment instrument for physics knowledge and skills that was generated, and • Results from over 350 students who took the pre-test.The intent of the paper is to clarify answers to two questions: • What do engineering faculty members expect students to know and be able to do when they begin a sophomore statics and dynamics course? • To what extent do students satisfy these expectations?After administering the instrument and analyzing the results, faculty members have a better ideaof the background of their students and can adjust course content. Further, there will be evidenceto examine the extent to which students are prepared in physics mechanics to begin a coreengineering science course. Finally, the paper will also present changes that some facultymembers made in the course plans to apply what they learned about the extent of their students’preparation in physics near the beginning of the course.
Shryock, K. J., & Srinivasa, A. R., & Froyd, J. E. (2011, June), Assessing First-Year Physics Mechanics Knowledge and Skills Needed for a Sophomore Statics and Dynamics Course Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/17520
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