Comprehensive Assessment Tracking System

Physics Explanations and Relevance

Thursday, January 12, 2017 to Wednesday, April 12, 2017

I have used the textbook for reviewing physics content.  In the fall spring of 2015, I allowed students an option of doing small at home labs/demos, video themselves doing the activity and explaining the physics behind it.  I found that the students who did these activities liked them and demonstated a deeper understanding of the material. In the fall of 2016, I decided to expand this idea and make the assignment a larger requirement of the overal grade. I also provided more opportunities to do these type of small projects.  I gave  students the option of choosing the activities, an online component, or book work. I wanted to give them a variety of choices.  I thought students would choose a small video activites over the 15+problems from the book.   Unfortunately, I saw many students would rather do the book work over the video.  My hope this semester is to add in a current events option and less book options. I still want to give some variety but limit the amount of book choices.  Hopefully,  students can find more relevance in everyday applications rather than book work. 

Completed Full Cycle: 
Course Number: 
Phy 101


AMY2068401's picture
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Hi Angela -

We keep receiving the message to incorporate more technology into the classroom.  The video idea is a great approach!  Not only are you encouraging the use of technology as a teaching tool, but you are giving your students opportunity to employ their creativity and imagination. I encourage my students to try to explain a concept to themselves in front of a mirror - it's uncomfortable, but it makes them check their comprehension by discussing the content "in front of an audience". The video project may be doing the same thing, which may explain why so many students are retreating to the book-based project.  I've been thinking about how to develop simple technology projects for my students - I think you have hit on something for me!  Thanks for this CATS! 

REBZS76641's picture
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Hi Angela - I wanted to follow up with this CATS and see if you have had any positive results.  I hope your new approach is helping. Thanks!