Physics Education Research

Dr. Wolf’s research interests broadly involve the development of scientific expertise. He likes to answer questions like, “How can we get students to do science?” and “How do collaboration networks form and change over the course of the semester?” He uses novel statistical methods and visualizations to describe collaboration in classes and groups. He has also been studying the ways that students answer scientific questions in laboratory settings, and developed curriculum and assessments specific to physics labs. Dr. Wolf is also the Director of ECU’s Learning Assistant (LA) program. The LA program is part of a internationally recognized model supporting students at colleges and universities. Faculty work with experienced undergraduate students to support interventions that have been shown to be highly effective at increasing student performance across the spectrum. LAs take a course about how people learn, and gain understanding about why these interventions are effective and what elements make them effective.

Above are self-reported student networks. Note how they change over the course of the semester (top left, early and bottom right, late) and become more densely connected over time.