In 1997 and 1998, Wiley’s physics editor, Stuart Johnson, and an informally constituted group of curriculum developers and educational reformers known as the Activity Based Physics Group began discussing the feasibility of integrating a broad array of curricular materials that are physics education research-based. This led to the assembly of an Activity Based Physics Suite that includes this textbook. The Physics Suite also includes materials that can be combined in different ways to meet the needs of instructors working in vastly different learning environments. The Interactive Lecture Demonstration Series is designed primarily for use in lecture sessions. Other Suite materials can be used in laboratory settings including the Workshop Physics Activity Guide, the Real Time Physics Laboratory modules, and Physics by Inquiry. Additional elements in the collection are suitable for use in recitation sessions such as the University of Washington Tutorials in Introductory Physics (available from Prentice Hall) and a set of Quantitative Tutorials developed at the University of Maryland. The Activity Based Physics Suite is rounded out with a collection of thinking problems developed at the University of Maryland. In addition to this Understanding Physics text, the Physics Suite elements include:

1. Teaching Physics with the Physics Suite by Edward F. Redish (University of Maryland). This book is not only the “Instructors Manual” for Understanding Physics, but it is also a book for anyone who is interested in learning about recent developments in physics education. It is a handbook with a variety of tools for improving both teaching and learning of physics—from new kinds of homework and exam problems, to surveys for figuring out what has happened in your class, to tools for taking and analyzing data using computers and video. The book comes with a Resource CD containing 14 conceptual and 3 attitude surveys, and more than 250 thinking problems covering all areas of introductory physics, resource materials from commercial vendors on the use of computerized data acquisition and video, and a variety of other useful reference materials. (Instructors can obtain a complimentary copy of the book and Resource CD, from John Wiley & Sons.)

2. RealTime Physics by David Sokoloff (University of Oregon), Priscilla Laws (Dickinson College), and Ronald Thornton (Tufts University). RealTime Physics is a set of laboratory materials that uses computer-assisted data acquisition to help students build concepts, learn representation translation, and develop an understanding of the empirical base of physics knowledge. There are three modules in the collection: Module 1: Mechanics (12 labs), Module 2: Heat and Thermodynamics (6 labs), and Module 3: Electric Circuits (8 labs). (Available both in print and in electronic form on The Physics Suite CD.)

3. Interactive Lecture Demonstrations by David Sokoloff (University of Oregon) and Ronald Thornton (Tufts University). ILDs are worksheet-based guided demonstrations designed to focus on fundamental principles and address specific naïve conceptions. The demonstrations use computer-assisted data acquisition tools to collect and display high quality data in real time. Each ILD sequence is designed for delivery in a single lecture period. The demonstrations help students build concepts through a series of instructor-led steps involving prediction, discussions with peers, viewing the demonstration and reflecting on its outcome. The ILD collection includes sequences in mechanics, thermodynamics, electricity, optics and more. (Available both in print and in electronic form on The Physics Suite CD.)

4. Workshop Physics by Priscilla Laws (Dickinson College).Workshop Physics consists of a four part activity guide designed for use in calculus-based introductory physics courses.Workshop Physics courses are designed to replace traditional lecture and laboratory sessions. Students use computer tools for data acquisition, visualization, analysis and modeling. The tools include computer-assisted data acquisition software and hardware, digital video capture and analysis software, and spreadsheet software for analytic mathematical modeling. Modules include classical mechanics (2 modules), thermodynamics & nuclear physics, and electricity & magnetism. (Available both in print and in electronic form on The Physics Suite CD.)

5. Tutorials in Introductory Physics by Lillian C. McDermott, Peter S. Shaffer and the Physics Education Group at the University of Washington. These tutorials consist of a set of worksheets designed to supplement instruction by lectures and textbook in standard introductory physics courses. Each tutorial is designed for use in a one-hour class session in a space where students can work in small groups using simple inexpensive apparatus. The emphasis in the tutorials is on helping students deepen their understanding of critical concepts and develop scientific reasoning skills. There are tutorials on mechanics, electricity and magnetism, waves, optics, and other selected topics. (Available in print from Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey.)

6. Physics by Inquiry by Lillian C. McDermott and the Physics Education Group at the University of Washington. This self-contained curriculum consists of a set of laboratory-based modules that emphasize the development of fundamental concepts and scientific reasoning skills. Beginning with their observations, students construct a coherent conceptual framework through guided inquiry. Only simple inexpensive apparatus and supplies are required. Developed primarily for the preparation of precollege teachers, the modules have also proven effective in courses for liberal arts students and for underprepared students. The amount of material is sufficient for two years of academic study. (Available in print.)

7. The Activity Based Physics Tutorials by Edward F. Redish and the University of Maryland Physics Education Research Group. These tutorials, like those developed at the University of Washington, consist of a set of worksheets developed to supplement lectures and textbook work in standard introductory physics courses. But these tutorials integrate the computer software and hardware tools used in other Suite elements including computer data acquisition, digital video analysis, simulations, and spreadsheet analysis. Although these tutorials include a range of classical physics topics, they also include additional topics in modern physics. (Available only in electronic form on The Physics Suite CD.)

8. The Understanding Physics Video CD for Students by Priscilla Laws, et. al.:This CD contains a collection of the video clips that are introduced in Understanding Physics narrative and alternative problems.The CD includes a number of QuickTime movie segments of physical phenomena along with the QuickTime player x Preface software. Students can view video clips as they read the text. If they have video analysis software available, they can reproduce data presented in text graphs or complete video analyses based on assignments designed by instructors.

9. WPTools by Priscilla Laws and Patrick Cooney: These tools consist of a set of macros that can be loaded with Microsoft Excel software that allow students to graph data transferred from computer data acquisition software and video analysis software more easily. Students can also use the WPTools to analyze numerical data and develop analytic mathematical models.

10. The Physics Suite CD. This CD contains a variety of the Suite Elements in electronic format (Microsoft Word files). The electronic format allows instructors to modify and reprint materials to better fit into their individual course syllabi. The CD contains much useful material including complete electronic versions of the following: RealTime Physics, Interactive Lecture Demonstrations, Workshop Physics, Activity Based Physics Tutorials.