Some students may think light is projected from a source

Light, Sound and Waves


Diagnostic Resources

The following worksheets may help to identify whether students hold this particular misconception.

For more information, see the University of York BEST website.

Resources to Address This

  • Seeing everyday  (5-11)

    Ref- SPT HS01 PN01

    In day-to-day living we pick up huge amounts of information through our eyes: most of the time the sheer quantity is too much and we selectively attend to some things while ignoring others.

    View Resource
  • Seeing with light  (11-14)

    Ref - SPT Li01 PN02

    This activity explores the difference between seeing luminous objects and non-luminous objects.

    View Resource


The following studies have documented this misconception:

  • Maurício, P., Valente, B. & Chagas, I. () A Didactic Sequence of Elementary Geometric Optics Informed by History and Philosophy of Science. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 15


    Review sheet

  • Boyes, E. & Stanisstreet, M. () Development of Pupils’ Ideas about Seeing and Hearing‐‐the path of light and sound. Research in Science & Technological Education.

    Review sheet

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