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Teaching of the phenomena of free, damped and forced oscillations in physics through an all-inclusive Java applet
Abhijit Poddar
Dept. of Electronic Science Surendranath Evening College 24/2 M.G. Road Kolkata
A java applet has been created for use as an all-inclusive online as well as offline learning object to teach the phenomena of free, damped and forced oscillations in physics in an entirely novel way. Subtle, yet very important features of the above phenomena, which can be difficult to make young learners understand through conventional classroom teaching, can be made easily understandable with the applet’s help, through demonstration of animated plots, as well as through the provision for virtual experimentation with appropriate controls. The learner can keep track of the relevant theory including all pertinent equations, which come into focus in synchronization with the dynamic plots in real time. A topical quiz has been embedded inside the applet itself to examine the improvement, if any, in his understanding of the topic. Quantitative as well as interview-based studies to test the effectiveness of the applet have also been carried out. The results indicate that the applet can be most effective when used in conjunction with proper guidance from the teacher and when made part of a well thought-out curriculum.