Reading Material

Reading Material

Over the years, we contributed to a series of articles that explain different aspects of CERN and particle physics at a high-school level. Below, we list interesting reading material including a short description of the content of each article.

Let’s have a coffee with the Standard Model of particle physics!

Abstract: The Standard Model of particle physics is one of the most successful theories in physics and describes the fundamental interactions between elementary particles. It is encoded in a compact description, the so-called 'Lagrangian', which even fits on t-shirts and coffee mugs. This mathematical formulation, however, is complex and only rarely makes it into the physics classroom. Therefore, to support high school teachers in their challenging endeavour of introducing particle physics in the classroom, we provide a qualitative explanation of the terms of the Lagrangian and discuss their interpretation based on associated Feynman diagrams.

lagrangian_mug

Link: https://doi.org/10.1088/1361-6552/aa5b25 (open access)

Cite as: Woithe, J., Wiener, G. J., & Van der Veken, F. F. (2017). Let’s have a coffee with the Standard Model of particle physics! Physics Education, 52(3), 034001

Introducing the LHC in the classroom: an overview of education resources available

Abstract: In the context of the recent re-start of CERN's Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and the challenge presented by unidentified falling objects (UFOs), we seek to facilitate the introduction of high energy physics in the classroom. Therefore, this paper provides an overview of the LHC and its operation, highlighting existing education resources, and linking principal components of the LHC to topics in physics curricula.

LHC_components

Link: https://doi.org/10.1088/0031-9120/51/3/035001 (open access)

Cite as: Wiener, G. J., Woithe, J., Brown, A., & Jende, K. (2016). Introducing the LHC in the classroom: an overview of education resources available. Physics Education, 51(3), 035001.

Introducing 12 year-olds to elementary particles

Abstract: We present a new learning unit, which introduces 12 year-olds to the subatomic structure of matter. The learning unit was iteratively developed as a design-based research project using the technique of probing acceptance. We give a brief overview of the unit's final version, discuss its key ideas and main concepts, and conclude by highlighting the main implications of our research, which we consider to be most promising for use in the physics classroom.

particle_system

Link: https://doi.org/10.1088/1361-6552/aa6cfe (open access)

Cite as: Wiener, G. J., Schmeling, S. M., & Hopf, M. (2017). Introducing 12 year-olds to elementary particles. Physics Education, 52(4), 044001.

Watch a time-lapse video about this paper on Twitter or Facebook