Virtual On line
June 22, 2020
June 22, 2020
June 26, 2021
Electrical and Computer
There has been a need to innovate instructors’ ways of capturing and assessing student learning in order to align their teaching strategies with the learners’ current understanding. The early detection of errors in knowledge among students allows the instructors to be dynamic and proactive in strategizing instruction. However, instructors presume that their own mental models are error-free. These presumptions need systematic validation to ensure that misconceptions do not propagate from learner to learner and to provide mutual benefit to both instructors and students as main participants of the learning process. The purpose of this pilot study is to examine prior and current knowledge in basic electric circuit concepts and to investigate the potential existence of shared misconceptions among teaching faculty and students. A 20-item concept inventory was designed and used in this study to methodically identify errors in fundamental electric circuit concepts as a means to inform instruction. This study addresses the following questions, “What misconceptions in fundamental electric circuits are potentially present in both instructors and students? How are these potential misconceptions shared between instructors and students?” The concept test that we developed was administered via Qualtrics, and semi-structured interviews were conducted among instructor and undergraduate student participants in electrical and electronics engineering departments. This study used thematic and comparative analyses to explain intersections and differences in responses among instructors and students through the concept instrument used. Results highlight how misconceptions associated with basic electric circuit concepts described in previous literature are manifested in the thought processes of instructors and students, such as the operation of a first-order circuit involving time constant, capacitor and inductor operations, and individual behaviors of electric devices in an AC circuit in steady-state conditions. This work has implications for educators, curriculum designers, and researchers who seek to improve student learning of difficult engineering concepts. The outcomes of this study will provide the opportunity for research to interrogate why these misconceptions continue to exist and how we can use instructional practices and curriculum design methodologies to uncover and repair these misconceptions.
Espera, A. H., & Pitterson, N. P., & Soto-Pérez, R. A. (2020, June), Understanding Potential Misconceptions Shared Between Instructors and Students in Fundamental Electric Circuits Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35425
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