Yuvita Oktarisa new PhD student at DSE – University of Copenhagen

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26 January 2018

Yuvita Oktarisa new PhD student at DSE

Yuvita Oktarisa started her 3-year PhD study in January 15, 2018 in the Didactics of Physics group and is supervised by Ricardo Karam. She is a university lecturer in Indonesia and works with the education of future physics high school teachers. Yuvita will conduct the project Conceptual Difficulties with Force and Motion Investigated from a Historical Perspective, which is funded by a grant from the Indonesia Endowment Fund for Education (LPDP).


Due to its central importance in physics, force has been one of the most investigated topics in the misconceptions literature. However, very few of these studies relate students’ misconceptions with different historical conceptualizations of force. Thus, this work starts from the hypothesis that investigating deeply the history of the concept of force could shed light on reasons for students’ difficulties and appropriate teaching strategies to overcome them. Furthermore, the historical investigation shall highlight a variety of conceptualizations of force, which is usually omitted in physics education. The objectives for this project are threefold:

  1. To understand the history of original formulations of the force concept;
  2. To critically analyze teaching materials developed to overcome the difficulties in learning the concept of force taking the historical perspective into account;
  3. To identify the conceptions of pre-service physics teachers regarding the plurality of concepts of force.