New Perspectives in Science Education

Edition 12

Accepted Abstracts

Results and Comparison of Different Complementary Assessment Methods of Science Learning Outcome

Mikael Lönn, Södertörn University (Sweden)

Ann Mutvei, Södertörn University (Sweden)

Jan-Eric Mattsson, Södertörn University (Sweden)

Abstract

To assess the quality of different aspects of the learning outcomes in relation to knowledge requirements as results of teaching several assessment methods have to be used. For most teachers it is also obvious that students differ in their ability to demonstrate the learning outcome depending on the assessment method used. In order to compare different assessment methods of the learning outcome of pre-school teacher students’ different types of tasks were evaluated and compared in order to identify the potential of each method to give the students fair chances of showing their skills. Thus, assessments based on multiple choice questionnaires of different types, long answer questions, practical laboratory experiments, self-diagnostic assessment and the students own ability to evaluate diagnoses were compared. Having Swedish as mother tongue also was included as an explanatory variable since we suspected that some of the assessment methods in reality rather evaluates the linguistic skills in interpreting texts rather than evaluating the content knowledge of the subject. The results for each student when different methods were used were compared in order to evaluate if some of the methods for assessment gave similar results or if the methods induced differences in the results for the same student. We use ordination techniques to assess and visualize main trends in the data and linear models and correlation measurements to evaluate specific associations. There is significant correlation between results from several assessment methods, there are positive correlation between combinations of results from of practical laboratory experiments, self-diagnostic assessment and the students own ability to evaluate diagnoses meaning students who showed good results with one method did so also with the others - but in other comparisons good results were independent of each other. There was a strong positive effect of having Swedish as mother tongue on the results in multiple choice questionnaires, but the other assessment types were unaffected. Linear models show that good achievements in several course learning outcomes are explained by high summed scores of Doll´s criteria, the four R’s richness, recursion, relations, and rigor.

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