Optics Concept Assessment: an Evaluation Tool

Document Type

Poster Session

Presentation Date


Conference Name

2010 Gordon Research Conference: Experimental Research and Labs in Physics Education

Conference Location

Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, MA


In order to assess student learning of optics, we have created a preliminary optics concept assessment exam. As optics is a broad field (wave nature of light, ray model of light, mirrors, lenses, interference, etc.), the exam is subdivided into multiple sections. In this way, it is possible to omit the uncovered sections. In the test we probe for common misconceptions, and discovered unexpected ones. We will show our initial findings as well as provide some indication of our philosophy in the design of the exam.


optics, assessment, physics


Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Optics | Physics | Science and Mathematics Education

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