The psychological structure of naive impetus conceptions

Efraim Fischbein, Ruth Stavy, Hana Ma-Naim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present paper analyses, on the basis of questionnaires and interviews, the various factors affecting the naive impetus interpretations in tenth and eleventh grade students. It has been found that, according to naive subjects, the action of impetus (even in the absence of any external force) depends on the shape, the weight and function of the moving body. A certain variety of naive impetus interpretations has also been found: The Marchian type‐‐the impetus is self‐expending; the Buridanian type‐‐the impetus is of a permanent nature; the transition to the Newtonian conception.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-81
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Science Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1989


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