### Rearranging equations: (concepts – misconceptions) × peer discussion

#### Abstract

Transposition of formulae (also known as rearranging equations and changing the subject) is a skill vital for professionals in many fields of science and engineering. It is however a topic with which many students, and particularly students of weaker algebraic competency, struggle and often do not master sufficiently. This paper proposes an intervention strategy for improved teaching and learning of transposition of formulae at third level. The intervention aims to address three key issues thought to inhibit students’ understanding of the topic: (1) a lack of conceptual understanding of equations and equality, (2) prior misconceptions and (3) a fast paced learning environment that does not account for diversity in knowledge and aptitude. The strategy consists of three hour-long lesson plans that emphasise conceptual understanding while also dispelling the relevant misconceptions, using a peer discussion teaching model as a vehicle for consolidating and propagating the right concepts. To account for diversity in prior knowledge and aptitude an online tutorial on the topic of transposition has been developed using an online e-assessment platform that allows students to practice at their own pace and receive instant feedback as they progress.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.21100/msor.v18i3.1053

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