While Heisenberg is not Looking: The Strength of ‘Weak Measurements’ in Educational Research
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The concept of 'weak measurements' in quantum physics is a way of 'cheating' the Uncertainty Principle. Heisenberg stated (and 85 years of experiments have demonstrated) that it is impossible to know both the position and momentum of a particle with arbitrary precision. More precise measurements of one decrease the precision with which the other can be measured. By 'sneaking a peak' at one variable however-conducting a 'weak measurement' that does not fully collapse the quantum wavefunction-and combining this with a subsequent strong measurement of the other variable, increased information of better quality can be gathered. By analogy, theories and methodological approaches could conceivably be combined in research in such a way that one does not 'force [the other] into blindness' (Bauersfeld 1988). This paper offers a theoretical and metaphorical introduction to an approach. The criteria for judging its value are empirical: does it work? Does it allow research work to be done and conceptualised in ways that are valuable? That evidence will be forthcoming as this approach is adopted and tested.
Australian Educational Researcher
© 2015 Australian Association for Research in Education . This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal website for access to the definitive, published version.
Educational Technology and Computing