An investigation into senior high school (shs3) physics students understanding of data processing of length and time of scientific measurement in the Volta region of Ghana

2014 IJRSET – Volume 3 Issue 1


Kumassah, Kosi Eliot*
Jasikan College of Education, Ghana (

Ampiah, Joseph Ghartey
University of Cape Coast, Ghana (

Adjei, Eugene Johnson
University of Cape Coast, Ghana (


Serious doubt have been raised in the Physics Chief Examiner’s report of the West African Examination Council of Ghana of both physics-1 (theory) and physics-2 (practical) as to whether science students really understand measurement of physical quantities. In view of this, the researcher use a mixed designed method to gather data from SHS3 physics students’ on their understanding of data processing of length and time. A population of 422 SHS3 physics students were sampled and a three item questionnaire on distance and time administered in order to find out whether the problem enumerated by the Chief Examiners’ of Physics concerning physics students exist and were either with the set paradigm or the point paradigm concept. Also twenty SHS3 physics were purposively selected and interviewed in order to validate students’ written responses. The study revealed that students do not have an understanding of using repeat in data set, anomaly in data set and straight line graph of data by the set paradigm concept i.e. all the three items on data processing of students (i.e. UR, AN, and SLG) were in line with the point paradigm concept of measurement. Also students seemed to have difficulty in plotting straight line graph by the use of lines of best fit.

Keywords: point paradigm; set paradigm; mixed paradigm; internalized set paradigm; consistent set paradigm



*Corresponding Author