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This study investigates differences in problem-solving performance between three different introductory physics course formats at Florida International University. The course formats--lecture+laboratory (LL), inquiry-based (IQB), and lecture+laboratory+recitation (LLR)--all incorporated two Advanced Placement (AP) questions into their final exams. Students' written responses were evaluated via an AP scoring rubric, and during this scoring, we observed marked differences in solution behavior between the three course formats. To further investigate these differences, we used the framework of epistemic games to analyze student responses. To apply this framework to written work, an epistemic game rubric was created. Application of this rubric yielded game profiles for each of the course formats, allowing us to highlight and compare course characteristics. These profiles of epistemic game distributions were then examined via chi-squared tests to quantify differences in the tools and strategies students used in their solutions.


Presented at the Physics Education Research Conference, Portland, OR, July 17-18, 2013.

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