Hiawatha Collegiate High School’s Physics program is using new innovative technology this fall that is greatly improving the way students analyze and assess data.

Physics teacher Alicia Gruenwald requested that the network purchase probe ware, and eight Vernier Labquest2 devices and sensors were bought for the class (and for other science classes to use).

The devices are computer interfaces that probes can be plugged into and that analyze the data collected by the probe. Examples include measuring water temperature, measuring an amount of CO2, measuring velocity, and much more.

“All kinds of devices and probes can plug into the interface,” Gruenwald said.

So, for example, if a probe is plugged into the device to measure velocity, students can put their hand in motion in front of the probe, and the velocity would read on the screen of the device. The students can read the data in different graph forms, compare data from different trials, and email results to themselves and others.

“It allows students to collect data quickly and see it in real time,” she said.

Analyzing something like velocity was somewhat theoretical before the probe ware was purchased. Students could observe the motion, measure distance, record time and create graphs from those measurements, but the measurements weren’t precise.

“I like to spend a lot more time in analysis of data,” Gruenwald said of her teaching methods, adding that analysis is where students learn the most.

She said the probe ware is important for students in terms of college-readiness, too. In college courses they will be using this technology.