UPI’s Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Education Advances Physics Education with Bifocal Modeling Tools

Bandung, UPI – The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Education (FPMIPA) conducted the Doctoral Promotion Examination (Phase II) held from September 1 to 7, 2023. One of the doctoral candidates, Sunardi, presented his dissertation entitled “Development of Bifocal Modeling Tools Based on Android Application BM-PHY for Implementing Physics Inquiry Laboratories Focused on Improving Inquiry Skills, Critical Thinking Skills, and Conceptual Understanding Levels of Students.”

Bifocal modeling tools are physics laboratory equipment consisting of a set of standard physics experiments, sensor devices, and output devices (Android smartphones) that display real-time data and/or physical visualizations using the Android application BM-PHY based on sensor readings. The limitations and/or absence of adequate laboratory equipment have resulted in a lack of practical experimentation intensity. This served as the background for Sunardi’s development of bifocal modeling tools for abstract and theoretical physics topics at the high school level (SMA/MA).

In the topic of simple harmonic motion, bifocal modeling tools based on Android application BM-PHY were developed to investigate the relationship between displacement and time in simple harmonic motion pendulums. Students can obtain physical data such as frequency, period, angular velocity, and visualize computer modeling results in the form of displacement (y) versus time (t) graphs displayed through the BM-PHY application.

Furthermore, in the theory of kinetic gas, bifocal modeling tools enable students to observe real phenomena displayed through the Android application BM-PHY related to changes in the macroscopic state of gases while simultaneously observing changes in the state and values of microscopic physical parameters of gas particles resulting from changes in their macroscopic state.

The result is that students participating in physics inquiry laboratory implementation using bifocal modeling tools based on the Android application BM-PHY acquire higher inquiry skills, critical thinking skills, and conceptual understanding levels compared to students following physics inquiry laboratory implementation using standard physics laboratory kits.

The open defense examination held on September 6, 2023, was attended by Prof. Dr. Andi Suhandi, M.Si. (Promoter), Prof. Dr. Deni Darmawan, S.Pd., M.Si., M.Kom., MCE. (Co-Promoter), Dr. Muslim, M.Pd. (Member), Dr. Achmad Samsudin, S.Pd., M.Pd. (Examiner), Prof. Dr. H. Chaerul Rochman, M.Pd., CIQaR (Examiner). The open session proceeded smoothly, and Sunardi was deemed worthy of obtaining the Doctoral degree. The bifocal modeling tools developed by Sunardi can be implemented in physics education in classrooms.