Computacional Modelling with Modellus: an Enhancement Vector for the General University Physics Course

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Abstract

In this paper we present a step forward to improve general physics as an educational experience: the implementation of a new course component composed by innovative workshop activities based on computational modelling in the general physics course taken by first year biomedical engineering students at the Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the New Lisbon University. The activities were created as interactive modelling experiments with Modellus, a computer software tool designed to construct and explore mathematical models based on functions, iterations and differential equations. Special emphasis was given to cognitive conflicts in the understanding of physical concepts, to the manipulation of multiple representations of mathematical models and to the interplay between analytical and numerical solutions of physical problems. In this work we describe these computational modelling activities and their educational aims. We also discuss their effective impact on the students learning of key physical and mathematical concepts of the course.
Original languageUnknown
Title of host publicationN/A
Pages461-470
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2009
EventFISER 2009: Frontiers in Science Education Research -
Duration: 1 Jan 2009 → …

Conference

ConferenceFISER 2009: Frontiers in Science Education Research
Period1/01/09 → …

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