Interactive Quiz (IQ) - Library ( at

Dear Colleague,

If you are currently teaching an introductory general physics course or might be teaching it in the near future, I invite you to visit:

I have developed this library over the past several years (see details below). Although this library was developed mainly for Engineering Physics, I believe that the library may also be used in other general physics courses. One may use this library with or without using the Classtalk system.

The library consists of "bite-size" physics questions. Dorothy at the physics main office has hardcopies of these questions. They are ready for you to make transparencies and to use them for your classroom teaching. Since these questions are available over the web, to save time students can simply jot down the question numbers, and not bother to write down the details of the questions.

As a resource for your teaching, if you are interested in having a copy of a portion of the library, or of the entire library please contact Dorothy at the physics main office. We also have this library in a compact format. Again please check with Dorothy.

Thank you for your attention,

Sincerely yours,

Charles Chiu

August 30, 2000

A Collection of Interactive Quiz (IQ) Questions

Inspired by the Peer Instruction approach of Professor Eric Mazur of Harvard and the local implementation of Professor Mike Downer, in the past several years I have been teaching Engineering Physics using an interactive approach. I intersperse interactive quiz (IQ) sessions in a lecture. To ensure the quality of these sessions, I have developed a collection of questions for these sessions. They are typically "bite-size" questions, which help me to check to what extent students are following the lecture. I also use them to highlight the lecture material and to accentuate nuances in the homework problems. So after attending each class, students feel that they have "gotten" something from the lecture. At least they have learned a handful of IQ questions.

The IQ questions are non-calculator based problems. They are typically,

A large number of these questions follow a two-part format. The first part is typically easy and the second part, which is referred to as the "extra", is slightly harder. In this manner I can keep those faster-working students busy during the whole IQ session. Our present collection of IQ questions contains more questions than those which I use in the IQ sessions. Some of these questions have been used as lecture transparencies. Since the IQ questions used are on the Web, when an IQ transparency is shown on the screen, students only need to jot down this question number. This enables them to pay more attention to the explanation, instead of busily taking notes.

Many students have told me that they like these IQ questions as a study tool in learning physics. Once they have read the textbook and work through the IQ questions, they find that doing homework is a relatively easy task. When students asked me for homework hints, I would often ask them to work on a specific IQ question or a set of IQ questions.

In early years, I used an IQ-log to keep track of the IQ questions covered in my class. To see the Physics303K IQ-log for Fall '97, please click here. A glance at this log would give the reader some idea how the IQ approach has been implemented. The present IQ-library consists of IQ questions from two sources: the set of questions we have developed and questions from the Peer Instruction book by Mazur.

Acknowledgment: My gratitude to our assistants Wenjun Li, Chad Bagwell, Natasha Wood and Bo Hu for their excellent contributions to our project of putting iq-questions on the Web. We thank Scott Stebleton for simplifying the downloading process. Special thanks to our former chairman Austin Gleeson , our present chairman Ken Gentle and departmental staffs for their support, and also to the College of Natural Science for the the ITAC grant which partially supported this project.

C. Chiu, 8/20/2000