Using misconceptions research in the design of optics instructional materials and teacher professional development programs

Stephen M. Pompea, Erin F C Dokter, Constance E. Walker, Robert T. Sparks

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

To create the Hands-On Optics program and its associated instructional materials, we needed to understand a number of basic optics misconceptions held by children (and adults) and how to address them through a proper educational approach. The activities have been built with an understanding of the naïve concepts many people have about light, color, and optical phenomena in general. Our own experience is that the concepts that children and adults have of light are often not that different from each other. This paper explores the most common misconceptions about light and color, according to educational research, and describes how they can be addressed in optics education programs. This understanding of misconceptions was useful as well in the professional development component of the program where educators were trained on the Hands-On Optics modules. The professional development work for the optics industry volunteers who worked with the educators was also based on research on how an optics professional can work more effectively in multi-cultural settings-an area with great applicability to industry volunteers working in the very different culture of science centers or after-school programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
PublisherSPIE
Volume9665
DOIs
StatePublished - 2007
Event10th International Topical Meeting on Education and Training in Optics and Photonics - Ottawa, Canada
Duration: Jun 3 2007 → …

Other

Other10th International Topical Meeting on Education and Training in Optics and Photonics
CountryCanada
CityOttawa
Period6/3/07 → …

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Keywords

  • inquiry
  • misconceptions
  • Optics education
  • professional development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Mathematics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Pompea, S. M., Dokter, E. F. C., Walker, C. E., & Sparks, R. T. (2007). Using misconceptions research in the design of optics instructional materials and teacher professional development programs. In Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering (Vol. 9665). [966515] SPIE. https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2207517