This project will produce challenge based workshops that are designed to improve student conceptual understanding of heat transfer. Student misconceptions will be measured using the thermal science concept inventory that was developed in prior NSF work. The basic hypothesis is that students will be able to address and correct misconceptions by performing experiments that utilize an innovative sensor measuring heat flux. The assessment plan includes measures that will identify whether or not student misunderstandings have been clarified. The assessment will include data taken immediately after the lesson and data taken at a later date thereby enabling researchers to better understand the longevity of the changes made in student understanding.
If successful, the work could be very transformative. The inexpensive nature of the equipment and the large number of students who study heat transfer are good indications that there will be a large demand for and a small cost of implementing similar programs nationally.