About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 6034-6036
Publication year: 2012
ISBN: 978-84-616-0763-1
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 19-21 November, 2012
Location: Madrid, Spain

A TWO-LEVEL, CONTEXTUAL APPROACH TO TEACHING PHYSICS WITH VIDEOS AND ANIMATIONS: THE PHYSCLIPS PROJECT

J. Wolfe, G. Hatsidimitris

University of New South Wales (AUSTRALIA)
How best to use film clips and animations in learning and teaching? On the one hand, they are well suited for the time-varying phenomena that are everywhere in physics. On the other, some research shows that animations can be cognitively demanding and that certain constraints should be observed to optimise the learning environment.

In this paper, we report a project in which we have designed the context and the user interface to provide a broad, deep, flexible and user-controlled learning environment – at two main levels.

Physclips is a large site presenting introductory physics at the level of senior high school and first year university. Because physics is an experimental subject, it relies fundamentally on film clips of key experiments and phenomena. It also uses animations extensively, including animations of time-varying abstract quantities (vectors, energy etc) superposed on film clips. It is divided into volumes (Mechanics, Special Relativity, Waves and Sound, Light) and each volume into chapters, each of which covers roughly the material of a textbook chapter.

In the top or overview level, each chapter has a rich multimedia, narrated tutorial, lasting about 10 minutes and divided into typically six sections. These present the material using film clips of the key experiments, with animations, images, equations or sound files as appropriate. A scroll bar is indexed with images, text and equations to allow easy location and replay of key components.
To maintain rigour with this brevity, links appear during and at the end of each multimedia section. The links lead to support pages in html. As well as the film clips and animations, this time with user controls (stop, step, replay etc), these pages include any derivations considered too long for the overview, as well as deeper and more detailed explanation and broader discussion. The texts are much longer than those of the overview level, and more suited to slow and careful study. The support pages also include presentations of mathematical tools (vectors and calculus) which are sometimes needed in both presentation levels.
The extensive use of links between levels and, where appropriate, between chapters, coupled with the ease of navigation, allows each student to construct his/her own learning pathway.

Finally, for the teacher who may wish to use any of these film clips or animations in a lesson, they are provided for download so that the teacher can supply his or her own context – or contexts.
@InProceedings{WOLFE2012ATW,
author = {Wolfe, J. and Hatsidimitris, G.},
title = {A TWO-LEVEL, CONTEXTUAL APPROACH TO TEACHING PHYSICS WITH VIDEOS AND ANIMATIONS: THE PHYSCLIPS PROJECT},
series = {5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2012 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-616-0763-1},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {19-21 November, 2012},
year = {2012},
pages = {6034-6036}}
TY - CONF
AU - J. Wolfe AU - G. Hatsidimitris
TI - A TWO-LEVEL, CONTEXTUAL APPROACH TO TEACHING PHYSICS WITH VIDEOS AND ANIMATIONS: THE PHYSCLIPS PROJECT
SN - 978-84-616-0763-1/2340-1095
PY - 2012
Y1 - 19-21 November, 2012
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2012 Proceedings
SP - 6034
EP - 6036
ER -
J. Wolfe, G. Hatsidimitris (2012) A TWO-LEVEL, CONTEXTUAL APPROACH TO TEACHING PHYSICS WITH VIDEOS AND ANIMATIONS: THE PHYSCLIPS PROJECT, ICERI2012 Proceedings, pp. 6034-6036.
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