Case Study: Physics Reform at ASU
Arizona State University (ASU) used assessment and evaluation techniques to study how reformed engineering curriculum (e.g., interactive and cooperative learning, curricular integration, the infusion of technology, etc.) in physics impacted student learning and classroom environment. ASU used two assessment approaches. First, quantitative data such as pre- and posttest results of student comprehension were gathered using the Force Concept Inventory (FCI). Second, the Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol (RTOP), a measure of the degree of reform in the classroom, was used to gauge the following pedagogical changes: lesson design, communication, and student teacher relationships. Analysis of data showed, with the implementation of reformed curricula, student performance on the FCI surpassed all prior years in the FC. Additionally, the RTOP scores revealed significant changes had occurred in physics instruction.