Students' Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics Concepts from Feynman's Sum of all Paths Applied to Light

Authors

  • Maria de los Angeles Fanaro Núcleo de Investigación en Educación en Ciencia y Tecnología Universidad Nacional del Centro de la Provincia de Buenos Aires & CONICET, Argentina
  • Marcelo Jose Fabian Arlego Núcleo de Investigación en Educación en Ciencia y Tecnología Universidad Nacional del Centro de la Provincia de Buenos Aires & CONICET, Argentina
  • Maria Rita Otero Núcleo de Investigación en Educación en Ciencia y Tecnología Universidad Nacional del Centro de la Provincia de Buenos Aires & CONICET, Argentina
  • Mariana Elgue Universidad Nacional del Centro de la Provincia de Buenos Aires, Argentina

Keywords:

Quantum, Light, Feynman, Double slit experiment, Conceptualization

Abstract

We analyse part of the implementation of a didactic sequence to teach different aspects of light in a unified non traditional framework. The goal was to propose the quantum theory of light as a universal framework to describe different phenomena observed. The laws of quantum mechanics for light using Feynman´s “Sum of all Paths” approach adapted to the mathematical level of the students was proposed as a model to explain the experiences. This particular denomination of Feynman´s approach is an intentional choice to avoid the language of "integral" because the students haven't had calculus. Graphic representations and basic operations with vectors capturing the essential aspects of the theory, were used. Simulations made with the software GeoGebra(R) and Modellus were created to help students visualize the formulation. The sequence was carried out in four courses (aged 15-16). For the data analysis, an answer categorization was formulated, considering among other aspects the quantum reformulation of experiment shown herein. This analysis seeks to understand the student´s conceptualization process about quantum interpretation. The results support the conclusion that the conceptualization is complex, and slow, due to both the concepts involved and the representation systems demanded by the situations.

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Published

2018-07-11

How to Cite

Fanaro, M. de los A., Arlego, M. J. F., Otero, M. R., & Elgue, M. (2018). Students’ Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics Concepts from Feynman’s Sum of all Paths Applied to Light. International Journal of Physics &Amp; Chemistry Education, 10(2), 41–47. Retrieved from https://www.ijpce.org/index.php/IJPCE/article/view/19