About us

Physics Education Group is actively involved in physics education research, development of the new educational tests and teaching materials, and continouus education of physics teachers in Croatia through physics education courses for university students, as well as many lectures and workshops for in-service physics teachers. The group collaborates with many scientists from other institutions, among which are also the two previous members of the group: Ana Sušac, PhD, currently associate professor at Faculty for Electrical Engineering and Computing at University of Zagreb and Lana Ivanjek, PhD, currently at Faculty for Physics at University of Linz, Austria.

The group has conducted a series of studies in the field of physics education research on university and high school students' conceptual understanding of mechanics, electromagnetism and modern physics. Several studies were conducted on student understanding of graphs and transfer of knowledge between mathematics and physics, as well as on other topics connecting mathematics and physics (often in cooperation with reaserchers on mathematics education), such as the use of vectors, simple algebraic equations and proportional reasoning.

Of the research methods used in the studies it is important to mention demonstration interviews, construction, evaluation and application of educational tests that are used as diagnostic instruments (with the use of Rasch analysis), development of inquiry-based teaching materials as well as the eye- tracking method (analyzing the eye movements of students while they perform different tasks). The group was involved in the construction of several new educational diagnostic tests (the Test on graphs in different contexts was published, and some others are still in the process of development or publishing). In addition, the group has evaluated the functioning of several tests which are frequently used in educational research, such as the Force Concept Inventory (FCI), the Conceptual Survey in Electricity and Magnetism (CSEM) and the Test of understanding vectors (TUV).

The group is currently involved in the research on high school students' understanding of wave optics within the research project IP-01-2018-9085, funded by the Croatian Science Foundation and the preparation of a teaching intervention that will help researchers evaluate the influence of introducing investigative students' experiments in high school physics teaching on the development of students' scientific reasoning and conceptual understanding within the teaching domain of wave optics.


  • 2018-2022: Effect of inclusion of students' investigative experiments in secondary school physics teaching on the development of scientific reasoning and conceptual understanding, INVESTIGATE, IP-2018-01-9085, Croatian Science Foundation (principal investigator: Maja Planinić)
  • 2013-2014: Investigation of student understanding of graphs in physics and mathematics, 202667, University of Zagreb (principal investigator: Maja Planinić)
  • 2007-2014: Physics and mathematics education research, 119-0091361-1027, Ministry od Science, Education and Sport (principal investigator: Maja Planinić)


Members of the group

Maja Planinić, PhD, associate professor

Katarina Jeličić PhD, assistant professor

Karolina Matejak Cvenić PhD, senior lecturer

Petra Plavšić, mag. educ. phys. et inf.