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Paper: Taking a Scientific Approach to Science Teaching
Volume: 443, Earth and Space Science: Making Connections in Education and Public Outreach
Page: 9
Authors: Pollock, S.
Abstract: It is now well-documented that traditionally taught, large-scale introductory science courses often fail to teach our students the basics. In fact, these same courses have been found to teach students things we don't intend. Building on a tradition of research, the physics and astronomy education research communities have been investigating the effects of educational reforms at the undergraduate level for decades. Both within these scientific communities and in the fields of education, cognitive science, psychology, and other social sciences, we have learned a great deal about student learning and environments that support learning for an increasingly diverse population of students. This presentation will discuss a variety of effective classroom practices, (with an emphasis on peer instruction, “clickers,” and small group activities), the surrounding educational structures, and examine assessments which indicate when and why these do (and sometimes do not) work. After a broad survey of education research, we will look at some of the exciting theoretical and experimental developments within this field that are being conducted at the University of Colorado. Throughout, we will consider research and practices that can be of value in both physics and astronomy classes, as well as applications to teaching in a variety of environments.
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