New Wine in Old Bottles: “Repurposed” Methodologies for Studying Expertise in Physics

José P. Mestre, Jason W. Morphew

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The study of expertise has a long tradition in physics and has led to a deeper understanding of how content expertise is developed and used. After a brief overview of previous methodologies used to study expertise in physics, accompanying findings, and how those findings have enriched classroom practices, we describe three new approaches for exploring expertise in physics. The three approaches rely on methodologies common in cognitive science but are repurposed, or adapted, to study expertise in new ways within a science content area. We discuss findings from these studies, some surprising and some expected, then conclude with commentaries about the value of these approaches for studying expertise in science, and speculate on the implications of the findings for improving educational practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-34
Number of pages34
JournalProgress in Brain Research
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Categorization
  • Change blindness
  • Expertise
  • Physics
  • Problem solving

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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