EXAMINING THE STUDENTS’ UNDERSTANDING LEVEL TOWARDS THE CONCEPTS OF SPECIAL THEORY OF RELATIVITY

TitleEXAMINING THE STUDENTS’ UNDERSTANDING LEVEL TOWARDS THE CONCEPTS OF SPECIAL THEORY OF RELATIVITY
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsÖzcan, Ö
JournalProblems of Education in the 21st Century
Volume75
Issue3
Start Page263-269
PaginationContinuous
Date PublishedJune/2017
Type of ArticleOriginal article
ISSN1822-7864
ISBN NumberE-ISSN 2538-7111
KeywordsLength contraction, reference frames, special relativity, time dilatation, understanding level
Abstract

Special theory of relativity is one of the difficult subjects of physics to be understood by the students. The current research designed as a qualitative research aim to determine the pre-service physics teachers’ understanding level and the alternative conceptions about three core concepts of special theory of relativity, such as time dilatation, length contraction and reference frames. The data were collected through semi structured interviews and were analyzed by using content analysis. At the end of the analysis process the understanding level of the students was determined to be “complete understanding”, “incomplete understanding” and “misunderstanding”. In order to achieve this, the students’ conceptual frameworks based on the operational definitions made by the students were determined firstly. The findings obtained in this research indicate that high school teachers as well as university instructors should take special care with some points in the teaching of the subjects related with special theory of relativity. This research might be useful to other studies to be done in the future, especially for investigating the students’ mental models related to special theory of relativity.

URLhttp://oaji.net/articles/2017/457-1498501129.pdf
Refereed DesignationRefereed
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