Physics Education Research Group (PERG)
Developing and field testing a research-based curriculum for high school physics
Exploring technology for next-generation classroom response systems
Effective pedagogy --- identifying students' initial understanding and misconceptions, engaging their minds in the activity of learning, continually monitoring their individual progress, and adjusting
Online support for students doing electronic homework
At a large state university such as UMass, resources are necessarily limited, and students in a course with 200 or more classmates often think they cannot possibly get the assistance they need to answ
Developing and researching the impact of an alternative format for multiple-choice assessment
Standard multiple-choice assessments, for which there are 4 incorrect and exactly one correct choice, are efficient to implement but imprecise and difficult to interpret.
Computer-based assessment tools for probing physics students' conceptual knowledge structures
Traditional problem-based exams are not reliable tools for diagnosing students' knowledge and guiding pedagogical intervention; new tools grounded in cognitive science and educational research are nee
A simple but rich mechanical system for teaching about the physics of jumping
(This is a companion website to the article Springbok: The physics of jumping
, published in The Physics Teacher
Springbok is our name for a simple mechanical system for teaching about the physics of jumping. A springbok consists of a large mass and a small mass connected by a spring; when compressed and then released, it jumps up into the air.
Researching the Role of Qualitative Analysis
RRA was a research project on the combined impact of qualitative analysis and reasoning activities and formative assessment on the attitudes, conceptual understanding, skills, and problem-solving prof
Question-driven instruction (QDI) means having students wrestle with rich, meaty, meaningful questions and problems as a context for sense-making and a vehicle for learning, not just as assessments.