TitleHow Students Organize Quantum Concepts and Representations: A Card Sorting Task
Publication TypePresentation
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsSolorio, Christian
Secondary AuthorsGire, Elizabeth, and Roundy David
Abstract

Students in a spins-first course often have difficulties transitioning from discrete to continuous quantum systems. We believe that computation may naturally support the transition because continuous structures like wavefunctions are necessarily discretized in order to be used in operations like numerical integration. We remotely  interviewed six students who were concurrently enrolled in a junior-level introductory spins-first quantum mechanics course and a computational lab course, which were designed to synergize with each  other. During the interview, participants organized a set of 20 cards that contained a variety of quantum mechanics concepts and representations, including snippets of Python code. Using a phenomenographic approach, this poster will discuss the various ways that participants made sense of the cards and how they organized the cards into groups such as “discrete” and “continuous”.