Gary Gladding presenting at a 2014 conference for physics teachers

PER group

Our group includes members from both the Physics Department and the School of Education.

Papers and Talks

Expert-Novice Differences on a Recognition Memory Test of Physics Diagrams

1/1/2007

2007 Physics Education Research Conference, AIP Conf. Proceedings


This study used a recognition memory test and specially constructed pairs of physics diagrams to measure differences between physics experts and novices (who have not taken college physics) in the way simple physics diagrams are encoded in memory. Results show that although physics experts encode aspects and features of physics diagrams that novices do not, in some specific cases novices encode features that experts do not. Physics experts were more likely to encode features of diagrams that were more relevant to the physics depicted. This suggests that the knowledge and experience of physics experts influences the way in which they conceptualize physics diagrams, even in the absence of a question prompt.