Jan 1, 2011


AAPT - American Association of Physics Teachers
AP Physics - a standardized curriculum of high school physic managed by the College Board, offered in three categories: A, B, and C
BCP - Biology, Chemistry, Physics - referring to the most traditional and common sequence of high school science classes where biology is taught in ninth grade (see PCB)
CASTLE - Capacitor-Aided System for Teaching and Learning Electricity - an approach to teaching Electricity and Magnetism, written by Melvin S. Steinberg and Camille Wainwright
ComPADRE - an online physics and astronomy education community
FCI - Force Concept Inventory - a diagnostic test used to gauge student understanding of Newtonian concepts of force and motion, originally developed by D. Hestenes, I Halloun, and D. Wells
IB Physics - a physics curriculum standardized for the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme
inquiry - an instructional method based in open learning, where students are led to discover concepts or phenomena by exploration and experiment, rather than being told an expected outcome explicitly
Lawson's Classroom Test of Scientific Reasoning - a test developed by Anton Lawson to assess scientific reasoning skills, such as proportional reasoning and how to properly control variables
Modeling Instruction - a notably successful method of physics instruction categorized by inquiry-based labs and classroom discussions based around whiteboarding.  Originally developed at Arizona State University, Modeling is gaining in popularity and Modeling workshops are offered every summer in dozens of locations across the country.
MBT - mechanics baseline test - a diagnostic instrument designed to cover a wider range of applications than the FCI
operational definition - a definition of a term given in terms of a procedure that can be followed to determine its quantity or quality (ex: weight can be defined operationally as the value that is read on a spring scale when the object is hung from the scale in the absence of forces other than gravity and the force of the scale itself.)
paradigm lab - in Modeling Instruction, a lab designed to introduce a relationship between measurable variables, by investigating this relationship directly without explaining it or giving it a name
PCB - Physics, Chemistry, Biology - referring to a sequence of high school science classes where physics is taught in ninth grade (see BCP)
PER - Physics Education Research - "an area of pedagogical research that seeks to improve methods used to teach physics" (Wikipedia)
PhET - a marvelous collection of web-based interactive simulations used in science and math education
Physics First - a philosophy of science education based in the belief that physics should be taught in ninth grade, before chemistry and biology.
whiteboarding - a pedagogical technique in which large (2' x 3') whiteboards and dry erase markers are used by students to record a solution to a physics problem or results from a lab investigation
Physics Regents - a NY state-standardized test in high school physics
SDI Labs - Socratic Dialogue-Inducing labs are labs designed to encourage students to think like scientists and engage students creatively in constructing their own understanding of physics concepts
TPT - The Physics Teacher magazine, a monthly journal devoted to teaching physics at all levels

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