Recent research in the development of the “Thermal and Transport Concept Inventory” test (TTCI) has shown that, despite completing several related courses, students have significant misconceptions of heat transfer principles such as the differences between heat, energy and temperature. This lack of conceptual understanding limits students’ problem-solving abilities (and thus their transition to expertise) and their ability to transfer knowledge to other courses and contexts. This research demonstrates how this problem can be addressed by integrating hands-on workshops into a traditional heat transfer lecture course. The workshops are designed to actively engage students in exploration and discovery using authentic problems. Using heat flux sensors allows students to physically observe abstract phenomena that cannot be easily observed.

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