Graphical representations of data improve student understanding of measurement and uncertainty: An eye-tracking study

Sušac, Ana and Bubić, Andreja and Martinjak, Petra and Planinić, Maja and Palmović, Marijan (2017) Graphical representations of data improve student understanding of measurement and uncertainty: An eye-tracking study. Physical Review Physics Education Research, 13. pp. 20125-20. ISSN 2469-9896

[img]
Preview
PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.
Language: English

Download (3MB) | Preview

Abstract

Developing a better understanding of the measurement process and measurement uncertainty is one of the main goals of university physics laboratory courses. This study investigated the influence of graphical representation of data on student understanding and interpreting of measurement results. A sample of 101 undergraduate students (48 first year students and 53 third and fifth year students) from the Department of Physics, University of Zagreb were tested with a paper-and-pencil test consisting of eight multiple-choice test items about measurement uncertainties. One version of the test items included graphical representations of the measurement data. About half of the students solved that version of the test while the remaining students solved the same test without graphical representations. The results have shown that the students who had the graphical representation of data scored higher than their colleagues without graphical representation. In the second part of the study, measurements of eye movements were carried out on a sample of thirty undergraduate students from the Department of Physics, University of Zagreb while students were solving the same test on a computer screen. The results revealed that students who had the graphical representation of data spent considerably less time viewing the numerical data than the other group of students. These results indicate that graphical representation may be beneficial for data processing and data comparison. Graphical representation helps with visualization of data and therefore reduces the cognitive load on students while performing measurement data analysis, so students should be encouraged to use it.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: measurement, uncertainty, graphical representation, data comparison, eye movements
Date: 31 October 2017
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Physics
Additional Information: © 2017 American Physical Society. Published by the American Physical Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/). Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the published article’s title, journal citation, and DOI. Received 10 January 2016. Revised manuscript received 28 July 2017. Published 31 October 2017.
Divisions: Faculty of Science > Department of Physics
Publisher: American Physical Society
Depositing User: Gordana Stubičan Ladešić
Date Deposited: 03 Nov 2017 17:08
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2017 17:10
URI: http://digre.pmf.unizg.hr/id/eprint/5669

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item