- Browse by Author

### Browsing by Author "Moyo, Ndumiso Michael"

Now showing 1 - 1 of 1

###### Results Per Page

###### Sort Options

- ItemMathematical difficulties encountered by physics students in kinematics : a case study of form 4 classes in a high school in Botswana(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2020-03) Moyo, Ndumiso Michael; Ndlovu, Mdutshekelwa; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Education Policy Studies.
Show more ENGLISH ABSTRACT : The study set to investigate the mathematical difficulties that students encounter when learning kinematics in physics. It examined the nature of mathematical difficulties, their possible sources and the potential impact they might have during construction of their own knowledge. If a teacher knows in detail the difficulties experienced by students during knowledge translation process between mathematics and physics, one can decide how mathematics might be supportive and develop new teaching strategies that can help to overcome their problems. An understanding of the physical science concepts forms the basis upon which new physical science knowledge is constructed. The pragmatic paradigm was useful to gather instruments that would help to answer questions for the study. A cohort 40 students out of a population of 600 learners doing Physics Pure Award randomly participated in the study. A diagnostic test was useful to establish a baseline knowledge about students’ conceptions and misconceptions in Mathematics and Physics. A survey questionnaire administered in which 35 students responded to interrogate the nature of mathematical difficulties encountered by physics students when learning kinematics. Purposive sampling was useful to select six participants for the individual and focus group interviews. The main findings of the study confirmed existence of a variety of mathematical difficulties that hinder the effective learning of kinematics. Students lack adequate skills related to simplifying equations, determining the square root, making one value a subject of the formula, factorising, solving simple fractions and dividing and subtracting negative and positive numbers as often used in the equations of motion to describe different patterns of movement. The use of symbolic representations instead of numbers unlike in mathematics made students to have difficulties in understanding physics concepts. Symbols were often confusing to the learners as they are interchangeable used in a multiple of representation in physics. Students had problems in understanding graphs because of mathematics used to explain different concepts such as reading coordinates, calculating the gradient and determining the area under the line of a graph. Recommendations emanating of the study so as to improve teaching and learning in Mathematics and Science education include in-service training workshops to both Physics and Maths teachers to resource them on how to handle maths related concepts in the two subjects. It also requires that the teachers from the two subjects where possible should engage team teaching. To the curriculum developers it would be better to find out about the kind of mathematics to promote interdisciplinary learning.Show more