Misconceptions of Mexican Teachers in The Solution of Simple Pendulum

  • Luis Antonio García Trujillo Matemáticas de la Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila
  • Mario H. Ramírez Díaz
  • Mario Rodríguez Castillo


Solving the position of a simple pendulum at any time is apparently one of the most simple and basic problems to solve -in high school and college physics courses. However, because of this apparent simplicity, teachers and physics texts often assume that the solution is immediate -without pausing to reflect on the problem formulation or verifying that the solution obtained is indeed correct. This process causes conceptual errors to be carried out with them -students and even worse teachers. This paper presents some of the misconceptions found in teachers solving simple pendulum problems, moreover it presents proposals made in the texts, which generate the creation of such misconceptions in both teachers and students, and finally, it presents the proposal of a solution to correct this problem.


Alonso, M. & Finn, E. (1995). Física. Addison-Wesley, USA.
Amore, P., Cervantes Valdovinos, M., Ornelas, G. & Zamudio, S. (2007). The nonlinear pendulum: formulas for the large amplitude period. Revista Mexicana De Física E 53 (1) 106–111.
Amrani, D., Paradis, P. & Beaduin, M. (2008) Approximation expressions for the large-angle period of a simple pendulum revisited. Revista Mexicana De Física E 54 (1) 59–64.
Champagne, A., Klopher, L & Anderson, J. (1980). Factors influencing the learning of classical mechanics. American Journal of Physics 48, 1074-1078.
Choi, H. & Kim, J. (2012). Misconceptions of Scientifically-gifted in physics. Book of Abstracts, World Conference on Physics Education 2012, pp. 115, Gazi Üniversitesi, Istambul, Turkey.
Gartenhaus, S. (1979). Física. Nueva Editorial Interamericana, México.
Gertshen, C., Kneser, H. & Vogel, H. (1979). Física. Editorial Dossat, Madrid.
Gisbert, M. & Hernández, J. (1998). Física 2º Bachillerato. Editorial Bruño, Madrid.
Hammer, D. (1996). More than Misconceptions: Multiple Perspectives on student knowledge and reasoning, an appropriate role for education research. American Journal of Physics 64 (10), 1316-1325.
Houari, H. & Benosman, A. (2007). A contribution to overcome frequently misconceveid concepts in college physics. Book of Abstracts, ICPE2007, pp. 129, Marrakech, Morocco.
Mazzolini, A., Mann, L. & Daniel, S. (2012). Overcoming Academic Misconceptions about the Learning and Teaching of Physics. Book of Abstracts, World Conference on Physics Education 2012, pp. 37, Gazi Üniversitesi, Istanbul, Turkey.
McCloskey, M. (1983). Intuitive physics, Scientific American 248, 122-130.
Poling, M., D’Ana, M., Job, G., Agnes, C. & Herrmann, F. (2008). Problems with the teaching of entropy –incongruities and inadequacies from school and university books and their remedy. Proceedings of GIREP 2008, The Learning in Science Group, Department of Educational Science, University of Cyprus.
Quintero-Cabra, P. & Silva-Valencia, J. (2009). Estabilidad de un péndulo con forzamiento periódico arbitrario. Revista Mexicana De Física 55 (2) 161–167.
Ramírez, M., González, G. & Miranda, I. (2009). Detección y análisis de errores conceptuales en estudiantes de física de nivel universitario utilizando el sistema 4MAT. Lat. Am. J. Phys. Educ. Vol. 3, No. 1.
Resnick, R & Halliday, D. (1983). Física 1. Editorial Continental, México.
Resnick, R, Halliday, D. & Walter, J. (2001). Fundamentals of Physics. Wiley, USA.
Roller, D. & Blum, R. (1987). Física. Editorial Reverté, Barcelona.
Sears, F. (1975). Mecánica, Calor y Sonido. Editorial Aguilar, Madrid.
Solaz-Portolés, J. Moreno-Cabo, M. & Sanjosé López, V. (2008). Aprendiendo cómo se construye la ciencia: el caso del péndulo. Lat. Am. J. Phys. Educ. Vol. 2, No. 1.
Tipler, P. (1977). Física. Editorial Reverté, Barcelona.
Tipler, P. & Mosca, G. (2010). Física para la ciencia y la tecnologia. Vol. 1: Mecánica/oscilaciones y ondas/termodinámica. Editorial Reverte, Edición: 6ª.
How to Cite
TRUJILLO, Luis Antonio García; DÍAZ, Mario H. Ramírez; CASTILLO, Mario Rodríguez. Misconceptions of Mexican Teachers in The Solution of Simple Pendulum. European Journal of Physics Education, [S.l.], v. 4, n. 3, p. 34-44, feb. 2017. ISSN 1309-7202. Available at: <http://eu-journal.org/index.php/EJPE/article/view/95>. Date accessed: 26 may 2020.
Classroom Physics