Given the complex nature of educational contexts, the suite approach draws from a diverse literature of research-based theories and interventions to inform a holistic approach to supporting teachers in reforming their pedagogy. Primarily, knowledge of best practices around student and teacher learning, building supportive and adaptive networks, and institutional and organizational change, were used to develop design heuristics that guide our work with K-12 teachers. We are also committed to consistently evaluating the efficacy of our approach in achieving student learning outcomes.

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The average normalized gain for female non-native English speakers was 0.62 (compared to 0.53 among their peers). The average gain on the same assessment for university students was 0.40.

Belleau, S. & Otero, V. (2013). Scientific Practices: Equalizing Opportunities for Linguistically Diverse Students, in P. Engelhardt, A. Churukian, D.L. Jones (Eds.), 2013 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

Classroom research conducted by Nicole Schrode, a PEER teacher, demonstrated that her PEER students more readily relied on evidence to determine the correctness of an idea than students in a more “traditional” physics class.

Schrode, N. (2015). Consensus Paragraphs to Promote Connections Between Inference and Physics Principles. Presented at the bi-annual meeting of the American Association of Physics Teachers, College Park, MD, July 2015.

Normalized learning gains are a consistent measure of the effectiveness of a course in promoting conceptual understanding, as they take into account the diversity of students’ initial knowledge about physics. In a pilot-test year, differences in normalized learning gains between students in PEER classrooms and students in traditional classrooms were statistically significant.

[T-test Differences in Normalized Learning Gains Means: 0.13 ± 0.03, t=4.5, p=0.00]

Lindsay, W. (2018) Pre-Publication Findings

References and Publications

Publications discussing design principles on which PEER Physics is based:

Meltzer, D. E., & Thornton, R. K. (2012). Resource Letter ALIP-1: Active-Learning Instruction in Physics. American Journal of Physics, 80(6), 478-496.

Goldberg, F., Otero, V., & Robinson, S. (2010). Design Principles for Effective Physics Instruction: A Case from Physics and Everyday Thinking. American Journal of Physics, 78(12), 1265.

Hake, R. (1998). Interactive-engagement versus traditional methods: A six-thousand-student survey of mechanics test data for introductory physics courses. American Journal of Physics, 66(64), 64-74.

Publications and Presentations about PEER Physics classrooms:

Keil, J., Schrode, N., & Stober, R. (2017). Physics Instruction That Facilitates Learning Among Underrepresented Groups in S. Rabelo, C. Singh, & P. Engelhardt (Eds.) 2017 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

Schrode, N. (2015). Consensus Paragraphs to Promote Connections Between Inference and Physics Principles. Presented at the bi-annual meeting of the American Association of Physics Teachers, College Park, MD, July 2015.

Keil, J., Stober, R., Quinty, E., Molloy, B., & Hooker, N. (2015). Identifying and analyzing actions of effective group work. in S. Rabelo, C. Singh, & P. Engelhardt (Eds.) 2015 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

Ross, M. (2013). Challenging Traditional Assumptions of High School Science through the Physics and Everyday Thinking Curriculum (Doctoral dissertation).

Belleau, S. & Otero, V. (2013). Scientific Practices: Equalizing Opportunities for Linguistically Diverse Students, in P. Engelhardt, A. Churukian, D.L. Jones (Eds.), 2013 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

Ross, M. & Otero, V. (2013). Challenging Traditional Assumptions of Secondary Science through the PET Curriculum, in P. Engelhardt, A. Churukian, D.L. Jones (Eds.) 2013 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

Knapp, E., Otero, V. (2013). Adapting a Novel Curriculum in a Traditional High School Environment. Presented at the bi-annual meeting of the American Association of Physics  Teachers, Portland, OR July 17, 2013.

Belleau, S. (2012). Critical Classroom Structures for Empowering Students to Participate in Science, in S. Rabelo, C. Singh, & P. Engelhardt (Eds.) 2012 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

Belleau, S., Ross, M., & Otero, V. (2011). Implementation of Physics and Everyday Thinking in a High School Classroom: Concepts and Argumentation, in S. Rabelo, C. Singh, & P. Engelhardt (Eds.) 2011 Physics Education Research Conference Proceedings. Melville, NY: AIP Press.

PEER Physics was formerly called Physics and Everyday Thinking – High School (PET-HS).

Testimonials

“PET-HS is very student driven and I didn’t have to direct instruct… Students were finding the answers without me telling them. It was much more meaningful and led to greater retention with my students. I saw the confidence in my students grow. We’d look at the Scientists’ Ideas reading and they’d realize ‘oh I had the same idea that this Isaac Newton had. I must be pretty good at this.’ That was incredibly empowering.”

BeckyTeacher

“PET-HS gives ownership to students who haven’t had ownership in other science classrooms before. It empowers them to take charge of their own learning rather than just be fed information. I think it challenges their analytical skills. The experiments are authentic and challenge how students analyze things as they go through the learning process and allows them to reflect.”

Jenni Teacher

“The vocabulary was introduced after the phenomenon was examined… they don’t use it [the vocabulary] as a crutch, its more there to support their argument instead of just to throw in the key vocab words”

LukeStudent Teacher

“It’s nice to not feel like I’m just feeding students information and they’re just memorizing it… They are becoming better critical thinkers.”

KellyTeacher