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Reasoning with thermal cameras: Framing and meaning-making in naturalistic settings in higher education
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Physics Didactics. (Physics Education Research)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3070-567x
2020 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this Licentiate thesis, framed by the Resources framework and Social semiotics, I explore how students and instructors, investigating thermal phenomena with IR cameras, come to conceptually and epistemologically frame the naturalistic settings they participate in. Additionally, I look at how they productively employ resources , what barriers they encounter while reasoning about the thermal phenomena and how the semiotic resources of the IR camera relate to the framing and resources employed in their investigations.

The thesis is based on three groups of participants: two chemical engineering students and their two lab instructors (PhD students) in a calorimetry lab part of a unit on thermodynamics in a chemistry introduction course, and primary school teacher students in a physics unit on thermodynamics that is part of a course on science. The engineering students and their instructors were studied in a chemistry lab involving the Born-Haber cycle and enthalpy change of solution for some salts. The primary school teacher students were studied in a classroom where they had just had a class on heat transfer. Data was collected through video recording and subsequently transcribed.

The analysis is qualitative and contextual and is mainly based on multimodal conversation analysis with a special focus on the types of talk used and the resources employed, through the concepts and examples used by the participants when they are investigating a thermal phenomenon.

The thesis contributes with situated knowledge claims that include:

-        that the semiotic resources of an IR camera afford attention to thermal aspects (red, white and blue), measurement (the temperature values) and spatial movability (the form of the camera). The colors of the camera and the temperatures affect the conceptual framing (the students use of the concepts of heat and temperature) and the numbers and form affect the epistemological framing (what they do and how they do it). Other aspects affecting the two types of framing are also found.

-        that given a sequence of anchoring situations and experiments and some chosen teaching content, if the situations share some common teaching content and are sufficiently proximate, it is possible for the participants to conceptually frame the sequence coherently.

-        that both disciplinary and everyday based resources may act as both barriers and productive resources within the same reasoning process.

Also, some productive resources and/or barriers in the reasoning processes are identified for each of the three groups.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala, 2020. , p. 192
Keywords [en]
Physics Education Research, IR cameras, thermal cameras, thermodynamics, phase transition, heat transfer, Resources framework, Social semiotics, teacher education, chemistry education, visualization
Keywords [sv]
Fysikdidaktik, kemididaktik, värmekamera, lärarutbildning, termodynamik, fasövergång, lärandesekvens, Socialsemiotik, Resursramverket
National Category
Didactics Other Physics Topics
Research subject
Physics with specialization in Physics Education
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-406228OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-406228DiVA, id: diva2:1412692
Presentation
2020-04-03, Polhemsalen, Ångströmlaboratoriet, Lägerhyddsvägen 1, Uppsala, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2020-03-26 Created: 2020-03-06 Last updated: 2020-04-03Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Hot vision: Affordances of infrared cameras in investigating thermal phenomena
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Hot vision: Affordances of infrared cameras in investigating thermal phenomena
2019 (English)In: Designs for Learning, ISSN 1654-7608, Vol. 11, no 1, p. 1-15Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Lab activities typically involve phenomena that are invisible to the naked eye. For example, in thermodynamics transfer of heat and temperature changes are perceived by the sense of touch or indirectly observed by the use of thermometers. New tools can be introduced to increase the opportunities for talking science. In this paper, we explore affordances and semiotic resources related to infrared (IR) cameras, including color imaging, numerical values and the form of the tool itself, as used by undergraduate students and instructors in chemistry, representing a scientific community at two different levels of expertise, in investigation of a thermal phenomenon. The participants come to attend to thermal aspects of what happens when a salt (sodium hydroxide) is exposed to air, with and without the use of IR cameras. Video data were gathered and transcribed multimodally. Results show that the IR cameras afford a focus on the disciplinarily relevant thermal aspects of the phenomenon in both groups of participants, but that the students’ discussion, coordinated by their embodied engagement with the IR cameras, was limited to cumulative talk, where they do not challenge each other, and static use of the technology. This is contrasted with the instructors who shared their knowledge with each other and explored the phenomenon both spatially with the IR cameras, and verbally through exploratory talk. We suggest that this difference in the use of novel technology may be due to differences in experience of lab work and understanding of the studied phenomena, and that a shift between cumulative and exploratory talk may be an indicator of learning.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: , 2019
Keywords
IR cameras, multimodality, social semiotics, physics education research, chemistry education research, laboratory practice
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Research subject
Physics with specialization in Physics Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-383971 (URN)10.16993/dfl.94 (DOI)
Funder
Swedish Research Council, VR 2016-04113
Note

Part of a special issue on multimodality and science education

Available from: 2019-05-27 Created: 2019-05-27 Last updated: 2020-03-06Bibliographically approved
2. Going through a phase: Infrared cameras in a teaching sequence on evaporation and condensation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Going through a phase: Infrared cameras in a teaching sequence on evaporation and condensation
2019 (English)In: American Journal of Physics, ISSN 0002-9505, E-ISSN 1943-2909, Vol. 87, no 7, p. 577-582Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Phase transitions are everyday occurring phenomena, but students often find them difficult to comprehend, not least in terms of the principles of thermal physics. To be able to explain phase transitions in primary school, teachers need to understand various concepts and phenomena, such as condensation, evaporation, energy and temperature. As energy is absorbed or released during phase transitions, changes in temperature can occur. Infrared (IR) cameras can thus be utilized to visually observe and explore surface phenomena such as condensation and evaporation. In line with the resources framework, we have designed a teaching sequence which involves both everyday experiences and observations through IR cameras, and which is designed to encourage students to leverage common resources associated with evaporation and condensation. In testing our teaching sequence, we presented three thermal phenomena to a group of pre-service teacher students. Two of these phenomena, namely walking out of a shower and sitting in a sauna, were anchored in embodied experiences to hopefully activate the students’ resources and to make the students pay attention to the thermally relevant aspects. The third phenomenon was less familiar, involving the condensation of water on a piece of paper. The result shows that the students managed to carry out the sequence with the three phenomena and applied an explanatory model across all three to consistently explain evaporation. However, the lack of a more general model of chemical bonding and an overreliance on the second law of thermodynamics seem to have acted as barriers for the students’ forming of a coherent understanding of both evaporation and condensation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
AIP Publishing, 2019
Keywords
Physics Education Research, IR cameras, Phase transition, Teaching sequence, Thermal science, Energy, Teacher education, Coherence, Variation, Fysikdidaktik, Didaktik, Värmekamera, Fasövergång, Värmelära, Lärarutbildning, Lärandesekvens, Instruktion, Variation, Koherens
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Research subject
Physics with specialization in Physics Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-387445 (URN)10.1119/1.5110665 (DOI)000480387000009 ()
Funder
Swedish Research Council, VR 2016-04113
Available from: 2019-06-24 Created: 2019-06-24 Last updated: 2020-03-06Bibliographically approved

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