Finding the time: Exploring a new perspective on students' perceptions of cosmological time and efforts to improve temporal frameworks in astronomy

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[This paper is part of the Focused Collection on Astronomy Education Research.] One goal for a scientifically literate citizenry would be for learners to appreciate when the Earth came to be and where it resides in the Universe. Understanding the Earth's formation in time in both a sociohistorical and scientific sense allows us to place humanity within the larger context of our existence in the Universe. This article considers prior research from cognitive science, psychology, history, and Earth and space science education to inform a new research agenda in astronomy education. While there exists prior research related to learner's ideas of time and the Earth's location, research on how to help students develop a coherent model of the Earth's place in space and time in the Universe is still lacking. We highlight a set of preliminary findings from a pilot study that is part of this new agenda, which is focused on students' ideas on how to connect the Earth's formation with prior events in the Universe.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number010138
JournalPhysical Review Physics Education Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 15 2018


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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