Exploring LBC Physics Students' Conceptions of Diffusion

Authors: 

Luke Tunstall, Vashti Sawtelle, Abhilash Nair, Katie Hinko, Paul Irving

Diffusion is a process that arises in many undergraduates' science coursework. At Lyman Briggs College, two faculty have redesigned LB 273--Physics I--in multiple ways, among them including an increased focus on life-science connections and specific attention to diffusion throughout the course. In this poster, we present preliminary results on the evolution of fall 2016 students' conceptions of diffusion (gleaned from multiple data sources), the salient theme being that students entered the course with multiple conceptions of diffusion across multiple disciplines, often not in concert with one another. We highlight future directions for our team, as well as implications for STEM faculty more broadly.

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