Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Matthew S. White


The pedagogical approach of the flipped classroom with an active learning model shows great benefit for all students in many disciplines. This study explored the possibility that certain subsets of students may have varying benefits from this model. In this study, we used survey questions to categorize students and analysis of the Forced Concept Inventory (FCI) scores, including normalized gain (NG), to measure learning improvement. In particular, we used a questionnaire with two questions that were used to partition each sub-group. The first group consisted of students that have varying levels of physics knowledge and the second group consisted of students that have varying levels of math knowledge. The conclusion of this study shows all subsets of students on average showed learning improvement from NG, with the least exposure to physics demonstrating the highest NG score and those with the lowest level math background showing the lowest NG scores. However, learning gains do not seem to correlate with physics exposure but may correlate with math preparation. We saw no advantage to the subgroup with no prior exposure to physics on NG when the pretest scores were considered nor between subsets within each set of questions. We did see a statistically significant difference for the subgroup with the lowest math background, but only seven out of 330 students identified under this category.



Number of Pages

50 p.

Included in

Physics Commons