Interpretive themes in quantum physics: curriculum development and outcomes

Charles Baily, Noah D. Finkelstein

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


A common learning goal for modern physics instructors is for students to recognize a difference between the experimental uncertainty of classical physics and the fundamental uncertainty of quantum mechanics. Our prior work has shown that student perspectives on the physical interpretation of quantum mechanics can be characterized, and are differentially influenced by the myriad ways instructors approach interpretive themes in their introductory courses. We report how a transformed modern physics curriculum (recently implemented at the University of Colorado) has positively impacted student perspectives on quantum physics, by making questions of classical and quantum reality a central theme of the course, but also by making the beliefs of students (and not just those of scientists) an explicit topic of discussion.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2011 Physics Education Research Conference
EditorsN. Sanjay Rebello, Paula V. Engelhardt, Chandralekha Singh
Place of PublicationMelville, NY, USA
PublisherAmerican Institute of Physics
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)978-0-7354-0990-3
Publication statusPublished - 6 Feb 2012
EventPhysics Education Research Conference 2011 - Omaha, Nebraska, United States
Duration: 3 Aug 20114 Aug 2011

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
PublisherAmerican Institute of Physics
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


ConferencePhysics Education Research Conference 2011
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityOmaha, Nebraska


  • Physics education research
  • quantum mechanics
  • modern physics
  • curriculum development


Dive into the research topics of 'Interpretive themes in quantum physics: curriculum development and outcomes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this