Ok, well, I’m back to trying to stay caught up with this 180blog attempt. The first week in January was our first week back after the winter break AND the week before our semester finals.
SIDEBAR: I really, really, really dislike in a major way(OK, hate) our semester schedule…we have two days of finals, a make-up day (no kids except those that need to make up an exam or something else) on Friday. Then we turn around and start the next semester… it’s just not enough time. The Friday is a work day, but not a full one… all five of the instructors in that share my office had kids in to work on stuff and make-up stuff that the students had failed to make up earlier.
So here is how my final exams worked:
Monday — The 30 question multiple choice conceptual part. Brand new questions covering our introductory unit, constant velocity, constant acceleration, projectiles, N1L&N3L, and N2L. Why only 30 questions? The test was given on a normal 53 minutes period AND they are really good, higher level questions… nothing just simply recall this fact. They also completed one of the five problems from the problem set. It was on using Logger Pro to create a graph, then interpret it.
Tuesday– The remaining problem set, one problem from each unit.
Wednesday — The lab practical. The time frame was 80 minutes. Essentially, the lab practical was a challenge lab. It was based on an idea I saw in The Physics Teacher 2009 by David Jones called Time Trials — An AP Physics Challenge Lab. it is an awesome activity and includes some kinematics as well as dynamics.
The general students did not complete a lab practical but had the other two components of the final exam, a conceptual part and a problem set. Both parts of their final exam were given on the final exam day, 80 minute time block.