Identify a concept that is often misunderstood in your discipline. Can you think of an analogy that can help make the concept make sense to students?

Activity source

“so misunderstood” flickr photo by SquirmyBeluga shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

Complete This Activity

After you do this activity, please share it so it can appear with other responses below. If your response exists at a public viewable URL, you can add the information directly to this site.

Add A Response

25 Responses Completed for this Activity

  • Reinforcement – Punishment/Negative-Postive (Lauren Sabourin, @laurensabourin)
  • The Curve: An example of misunderstanding (Sofia Silberberg, @SilberbergSofia)

    The Normal Distribution (“The Curve”) and the Empirical Rule associated with it are used in almost all disciplines. The misunderstanding arises when the user assigns a population’s property to a specific sample because that property may (and most certainly will) vary from sample to sample. I draw from the student’s personal experience  (i.e.: having been… Read more »

  • "The Curve": an example of misunderstanding (Sofia Silberberg, @none)

    The concepts of sample, populations, and how they are used to make inferences are frequently misunderstood. Here is an example of how I deal with that misunderstanding.

  • Assessing reading with standardized tests (Pam Millett, @millettpam)

    My students (who are classroom teachers themselves) often balk at the idea of using standardized tests (“it’s not fair, it’s too rigid, there isn’t only one right answer, I know they could do better if I was allowed to help them, I don’t want to label children”). So I try to use the terms “frustration,… Read more »

  • Acidic Freshwater Lakes (Pamela Koski Bryant, @BryantKoski)

    Ontario extend module activity:Identify a concept that is often misunderstood in your discipline. Can you think of an analogy that can help make the concept make sense to students? Answer: I always have students in my environmental chemistry class who do not understand how pH can impact the different fish habitats in freshwater lakes. More… Read more »

  • The Art of Trial and Error (Chantal Abdel-Nour, @ChantalNour)

    Student: I’ve tried everything, and nothing is working…

  • Good versus Bad: An Analogy (Lynn Chartrand, @lynn_chartrand)

    Understanding laboratory results is often confusing especially when there are different lab values that have similar names.

  • The Kitchen Sink (Sidney, @data_professor)

    Students should recognize that you need the right tool or tools for the job, and know when to ask for help.

  • I've worked in my field for 10 years but I'm not an expert (Melanie Lefebvre, @ProfMelLefebvre)

    I’ve worked in the field of mental health and addictions for 10+ years but I’m not the expert. The client is. I’ll attempt to explain with the use of a search engine analogy. . .

  • Honesty in the learning garden (Helen, @baj_mac)

    A growing challenge in post-secondary education is breach of academic integrity. Some students might decide from the get-go to ‘cheat’ by plagiarizing or copying from another student. However, it seems most often the case that a student is pinched for time (i.e., leaving work to the last minute). Under such circumstances, the temptation to ‘borrow’… Read more »

    2 Responses to “Misunderstood”

    1. classified adds

      Great site you have got here.. It’s difficult
      to find quality writing like yours these days.
      I seriously appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!



    1.  Misunderstood – Learning Squirrel

    Leave a Reply to classified adds Cancel reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *