Developed by Apisit Tongchai, Manjula D. Sharma, Ian D. Johnston, Kwan Arayathanitkul, and Chernchok Soankwan
|Purpose||To identify students’ alternative conceptions about mechanical waves before instruction and evaluate the effectiveness of instruction at the end of a course.|
|Format||Pre/post, Multiple-choice, Multiple-response|
|Focus||Waves / Optics Content knowledge (mechanical waves, wave propagation, wave superposition, wave reflection, standing waves)|
|Level||Intermediate, Intro college, High school|
Sample questions from the MWCS:
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This is the second highest level of research validation, corresponding to at least 5 of the validation categories below.
Research Validation Summary
Based on Research Into:
- Student thinking
- Student interviews
- Expert review
- Appropriate statistical analysis
- At multiple institutions
- By multiple research groups
- Peer-reviewed publication
The multiple-choice questions on the MWCS were developed from the open-ended questions on the Waves Diagnostic Test (WDT). The open-ended WDT questions were given to Thai students, who were then interviewed about their responses, and the survey was revised as a result. The open-ended questions were also given to Australian students. All the student responses were used to create multiple-choice answers. The multiple-choice questions then underwent expert review. The MWCS was given to a new group of Australian and Thai students and appropriate statistical analyses of reliability, difficulty and discrimination were conducted and reasonable values found for each. The WDT has been used with over 1000 students in American high schools and universities, as well as Thai high schools. There are two peer-reviewed publication presenting MWCS data.
- P. Barniol and G. Zavala, Mechanical waves conceptual survey: Its modification and conversion to a standard multiple-choice test, Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 12 (1), 010107 (2016).
- P. Barniol and G. Zavala, Evaluación del entendimiento de ondas mecánicas utilizando un test de opción múltiple en español, Rev. Bras. Ensino Fix. 41 (4), (2019).
- A. Tongchai, M. Sharma, I. Johnston, K. Arayathanitkul, and C. Soankwan, Consistency of students' conceptions of wave propagation: Findings from a conceptual survey in mechanical waves, Phys. Rev. ST Phys. Educ. Res. 7 (2), 020101 (2011).
- A. Tongchai, M. Sharma, I. Johnston, K. Arayathanitkul, and C. Soankwan, Developing, Evaluating and Demonstrating the Use of a Conceptual Survey in Mechanical Waves, Int. J. Sci. Educ. 31 (18), 2437 (2009).
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|Spanish||Pablo Barniol, Genaro Zavala, Enrique Arribas, and Tere Franco|
|Thai||Apisit Tongchai, Kwan Arayathanitkul, and Chernchok Soankwan|
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There are no published typical results for the MWCS.
The latest version of the MWCS, released in 2009, is version 1. The MWCS is a multiple-choice adaptation of the WDT, an earlier survey that included open-ended questions.
Wave Diagnostic TestContent knowledge Waves / Optics (waves)
Intermediate, Intro college, High school
Pre/post, Multiple-choice, Multiple-response, Short answer
Mechanical Waves Conceptual Survey 2Content knowledge Waves / Optics (propagation, superposition, reflection, standing waves)