Students’ Beliefs and Attitudes Toward Learning in the Physics Component of the Lasallian (General Education) Core Curriculum
he Lasallian (General Education) Core Curriculum, im- plemented beginning Academic Year 2006-2007, aims to transform students’ beliefs, attitudes, and emotional reactions by providing opportunities for students to reflect on their learning experiences. This study documented the effect of the physics component of the new curriculum on students’ beliefs and attitudes by comparing the response profile of the freshmen of AY 2008-2009 with the response profile of the freshmen of AY 2005-2006 and AY 2006-2007. Pre- and Post-Course data was generated using the Maryland Physics Expectations Survey (MPEX) to determine students’ “cogni- tive expectations” – the student’s set of attitudes, beliefs, and assumptions about what sorts of things they will learn, what skills will be required, and what they will be expected to do in a physics class. Analysis of the results of the study re- vealed that the students moved towards an expert-like view in the Reality Link dimension and the Effort Link Dimension of the MPEX.