CLASS shifts in modeling instruction


Among the most surprising findings in Physics Education Research is the lack of positive results on attitudinal measures, such as Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey (CLASS) and Maryland Physics Expectations Survey (MPEX). The uniformity with which physics teaching manages to negatively shift attitudes toward physics learning is striking. Strategies which have been shown to improve learning, such as interactive engagement and studio format classes, provide more authentic science experiences for students, yet do not produce positive attitudinal results. Florida International University's Physics Education Research Group has implemented Modeling Instruction in University Physics classes. Using the CLASS as a pre/post measure has shown attitudinal improvements through both semesters of the introductory physics sequence. In this paper, we report positive shifts on the CLASS in two sections of Modeling Physics, one in Mechanics (N=30) and one in Electricity and Magnetism, (N=31) and examine how these results reflect on Modeling Instruction. © 2008 American Institute of Physics.

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