Using multimedia to teach college students the concepts of electricity and magnetism
Introductory college physics students have various preconceptions about the concepts of introductory electricity and magnetism. Using pretests, quizzes, and semi-clinical oral interviews, students' preconceptions in eight categories were examined: (i) existence of electric and magnetic fields, (ii) sources of electric and magnetic fields, (iii) representation of fields, (iv) superposition of fields, (v) relationship between electric and magnetic fields, (vi) relationship between gravitational and electric fields, (vii) relationship between gravitational and magnetic fields, and (viii) the behavior of magnets. Multimedia lessons based on the Karplus learning cycle were developed to address the students' misconceptions. Using posttests and semi-clinical oral interviews, the multimedia lessons were found to be effective in helping a majority of the students to better understand the concepts of electricity and magnetism.
0714: Science education