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Towards characterizing the relationship between students' self-reported interest in and their survey

Towards characterizing the relationship between students' self-reported interest in and their survey

This study examines the relationships between students' self-reported interest and their responses to a physics beliefs survey. Results from the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey (CLASS), collected in a large calculus-based introductory mechanics course, were used to characterize students' beliefs at the beginning and end of the semester. Students were also asked at the end of the semester to rate their interest in physics, how it has changed, and why. The investigators found substantial correlation between students' overall CLASS belief score and their self-rated interest at the end of the term. An analysis of students' reasons for why their interest changed showed that a sizable fraction cited reasons tied to beliefs about physics or learning physics as probed by the CLASS survey. The leading reason for increased interest was the connection between physics and the real world.

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