Integration of Laboratory and Tutorial sessions for First-Year Physics Courses

TitleIntegration of Laboratory and Tutorial sessions for First-Year Physics Courses
Faculty/College/UnitScience
StatusCompleted
Duration2 Year
Initiation04/01/2007
Completion03/31/2009
Funding Details
Year 1: Project YearYear 1
Year 1: Funding Year2007/2008
Year 1: Project TypeSmall TLEF
Year 1: Principal InvestigatorF. E. L. Bates
Year 1: Funded Amount27,200
Year 1: Summary

Currently the tutorial and laboratory sessions for each of Physics 100, 10 I and 102 are quite separate. We would like to integrate the laboratories and tutorials into a single unified "package" for each course. Teaching Assistants (TAs) would have a group of 24 students which they will instruct every week. Laboratory sessions and tutorial type sessions would still be on alternate weeks but we would like students to have access to the laboratory equipment for demonstration purposes. TAs and students would be able to reflect on the material covered in the previous lab/tutorial session and also be able to have some insight into the next lab/tutorial session.

The materials currently used for the laboratory and problem solving sessions will be integrated and new material developed. Extensive TA training will need to be implemented and rubrics developed to assist with student evaluation. Ideally we would like students to meet weekly in the same area. However, since our current laboratory space is fully utilized, the restructuring will require reassigned work areas equipped with laboratory workstations and projection facilities.

Year 2: Project YearYear 2
Year 2: Funding Year2008/2009
Year 2: Project TypeSmall TLEF
Year 2: Principal InvestigatorF. E. L. Bates
Year 2: Funded Amount22,200
Year 2: Summary

We have just started our first term of integrating Phys 101 laboratories and tutorials into a single unified “package”. The changes made so far are being evaluated and they will be expanded to hopefully include term 2 Phys 101 and eventually Phys 102. Documentation of specific learning goals is underway and the materials used in Phys 101 are being evaluated with respect to these learning goals. A comprehensive evaluation to promote the optimum utilization of our TA resources is also underway and to this end enhanced TA training has been implemented and rubrics are being developed to assist with student evaluation.