Chronology Current Month Current Thread Current Date
[Year List] [Month List (current year)] [Date Index] [Thread Index] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Prev] [Date Next]

Re: TA Problems

On Mon, 2 Feb 2004 09:35:39 -0700, Gary Turner <turner@MORNINGSIDE.EDU> wrote:

Does anyone have any experience of why the MCAT has physics on there at
all? It does not seem likely that our future doctors will need to know
about blocks sliding down ramps! I had convinced myself that it was about
problem-solving skills, but the MCAT questions are all plug-and-chug rote
memorization. The students who just want to get enough out of the course
to pass the MCAT get really upset when I sacrifice content for skills
because "it is not helping me get into med school".

At the AAPT meeting last week in Miami, Ken Heller (U. of Minnesota)
presented data on a study of the physics for bio majors. As part of the
study, his group surveyed the faculty in various biology-related majors to
rate the reasons for their students to take physics. Interestingly,
preparation for the MCAT and labs (formulate and carry out experiments) were
at the bottom of the list. Knowledge of physics principles and development
of problem-solving skills were at the top if my memory serves me well.
Similar results might hold in other places as well.

Karim Diff