Category Archives: interpreting graphs

A misconception about extrasolar planets

A couple of weeks ago in the introductory “Astro 101” class I work in, the instructor and I confirmed that many students hold a certain misconception. I was, still am, pretty excited about this little discovery in astronomy education. If … Continue reading

Posted in astro 101, clickers, communicating science, interpreting graphs, research, teaching | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Don’t forbid phones in class, embrace them

It’s not uncommon to hear, as I wander the halls at UBC, faculty complaining about students preoccupied with their computers and phones in class. The most common solution is to just ignore it (“if they don’t want to pay attention … Continue reading

Posted in interpreting graphs, teaching | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Going over the exam

How often have you heard your fellow instructors lament, I don’t know why I bother with comments on the exams or even handing them back – students don’t go over their exams to see where they what they got right … Continue reading

Posted in astro 101, interpreting graphs, research | Tagged , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Graph the graph on the graph

I was creating a worksheet for our #astro101 class about the expansion of the Universe. If the Universe is expanding at a uniform rate, it’s about 14 billion years old. If the expansion is accelerating (decelerating), a little logic tells … Continue reading

Posted in astro 101, interpreting graphs | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Interpreting formulas and graphs

When you pose a question to students about a non-trivial concept, and they get it wrong, it’s not obvious where the error occurred, which step they missed or misunderstood. Every now and then, though, you find a “diagnostic” question that … Continue reading

Posted in astro 101, interpreting graphs | Tagged , , | Leave a comment