Monday, March 13, 2017

Petrosino, A. J. and Mann, M. (in press). The Challenges of Fluid Density. Journal of Continuing Education and Professional Development

The Journal of Continuing Education and Professional Development is a peer-reviewed international journal in the general field of continuing education and professional development. It tries to provide a platform to scientists, engineers, educators, and policy makers to discuss new discoveries on continuing education, lifelong learning, and professional development.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to: Curriculum design, Virtual laboratories, Interactive knowledge media, New technologies, Team learning, Competency assessment, Policy making, Challenges and trends.

Index- Academic OneFile, EBSCO, Google Scholar

Dear Dr. Petrosino,

I am pleased to inform you that your paper The Challenges of Fluid Density has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Continuing Education and Professional Development.

Please submit your final proof (WORD file) at

The format guidelines are listed at

Kindly copy and paste your manuscript contents into the template at

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(1) the CIP header and the CIP logo are included.
(2) tables and figures are inserted into the body text


Journal of Continuing Education and Professional Development


Teachers’ understanding of science concepts must be deeper than just factual knowledge. They need to understand how the facts are connected and relate to the natural world. Weather, ocean currents, and tectonic movement are all phenomena listed in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Although understanding density of fluids within fluids is not directly mentioned in the NGSS, students need to understand fluid density in order to explain these common yet complex phenomena. We extended a familiar science activity of making a density column in order to help teachers understand the expectations of NGSS. Understanding the causes of the phenomena is critical for teachers. We found when students do not understand, they are more likely to substitute concrete or active causal factors, such as weight or force. We issued to our teachers the following challenge: “Make a density column with these 4 mystery liquids.” As our students were in the process of determining the correct order to add the liquids, we noticed they confused mass and viscosity with density. In light of the expectations of the NGSS, we need to change the way teachers are prepared. They need time and space to practice connecting the concepts in practice. Therefore, teachers need help to connect the concepts to past experiences as well as time to reflect and revise. Teachers need to develop a mindset as a lifelong learner powered by their reflections and drive to help students understand science.

Keywords: Professional Development; Density; Next Generation Science Standards; Science Concepts; Fluid Density; Domain Knowledge