Science & Education

, Volume 16, Issue 3–5, pp 291–311 | Cite as

Understanding the Role of Measurements in Creating Physical Quantities: A Case Study of Learning to Quantify Temperature in Physics Teacher Education

  • Terhi Mäntylä
  • Ismo T. Koponen


Learning to understand the content and meaning of physics’ concepts is one of the main goals of physics education. In achieving this understanding, the creation of quantities through quantitative measurements, or rather through quantifying experiments, is a key process. The present article introduces a didactical reconstruction for understanding the construction of the meaning of physical quantities from a network point of view, where the quantities are part of networks and the quantifying experiments build up these networks. As a practical example, we discuss how the quantity temperature is constructed in an instructional unit designed for student teachers and what the learning outcomes are.


didactical reconstruction measurements teacher education temperature 


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We would like to thank Prof. Jari Lavonen for helping us in gathering and analysing the data, and also for many inspiring and helpful discussions concerning our work.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physical SciencesUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland

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