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'Gamma Anna': a classroom demonstration for teaching the concepts of gamma imaging

Wolff, N; Yerworth, RJ; Griffiths, J; (2016) 'Gamma Anna': a classroom demonstration for teaching the concepts of gamma imaging. Physics Education , 52 (1) , Article 013001. 10.1088/0031-9120/52/1/013001. Green open access

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Abstract

Gamma imaging is at the interface of medicine and physics and thus its teaching is important in both fields. Pedagogic literature highlights the benefits of interactive demonstrations in teaching: an increase in enjoyment and interest, as well as improvement in academic achievement. However gamma imaging uses radioactive sources, which are potentially dangerous and thus their use is tightly controlled. We have developed a demonstration which uses a localised exothermic reaction within a rag doll as an analogue of radioactivity. This can be safely used in classrooms to demonstrate the principles of gamma imaging. The tool is easy to make, cheap, robust and portable. The supplementary material in this paper gives teacher notes and a description of how to make the rag doll demonstrator. We have tested the tool using six participants, acting as 'teachers', who carried out the demonstration and described the doll as easy to use, and the 'tumour' clearly identifiable. The teaching tool was separately demonstrated to a group of 12 GCSE physics students and a group of 12 medical students. Feedback showed increased student engagement, enjoyment and understanding of gamma imaging. Previous research has shown that these benefits have an impact on learning and academic outcomes.

Type: Article
Title: 'Gamma Anna': a classroom demonstration for teaching the concepts of gamma imaging
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1088/0031-9120/52/1/013001
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1088/0031-9120/52/1/013001
Language: English
Additional information: © 2016 IOP Publishing Ltd. This is an author-created, un-copyedited version of an article accepted for publication/published in Physics Education. IOP Publishing Ltd is not responsible for any errors or omissions in this version of the manuscript or any version derived from it. The Version of Record is available online at http://doi.org/10.1088/0031-9120/52/1/013001
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Engineering Science Faculty Office
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > VP Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > VP Education > UCL Arena Centre
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1509689
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