Developed by Erin M. Bardar, Edward E. Prather, Kenneth Brecher, and Timothy F. Slater
|Purpose||To measure students’ conceptual understanding of topics related to light and spectroscopy, and evaluate the effectiveness of instruction in introductory college astronomy courses.|
|Focus||Astronomy Content knowledge (light, waves, spectroscopy)|
Sample questions from the LSCI:
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This is the highest level of research validation, corresponding to all seven of the validation categories below.
Research Validation Summary
Based on Research Into:
- Student thinking
- Student interviews
- Expert review
- Appropriate statistical analysis
- At multiple institutions
- By multiple research groups
- Peer-reviewed publication
The multiple-choice questions on the LSCI were developed based on research on student ideas about light and quantum phenomena, the teaching experience of the developers and student interviews. Answer choices were written to reflect student language and ideas. The questions were reviewed by experts and revised. The LSCI was given to over 50 introductory astronomy students and a subset were interviewed, and the questions were subsequently revised. The LSCI was then given to over 500 students at 11 institutions, and appropriate statistical analyses of reliability, difficulty and discrimination were conducted. Overall, reasonable values were found, and a few items were flagged to be reviewed and revised. The LSCI has been given to over 3000 students at over 30 institutions and results published in six peer-reviewed papers.
- E. Bardar, First Results from the Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory, Astron. Educ. Rev. 6 (2), 75 (2008).
- E. Bardar, E. Prather, K. Brecher, and T. Slater, Development and Validation of the Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory, Astron. Educ. Rev. 5 (2), 103 (2007).
- E. Bardar, E. Prather, K. Brecher, and T. Slater, The Need for a Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory for Assessing Innovations in Introductory Astronomy Survey Courses, Astron. Educ. Rev. 4 (2), 20 (2005).
- J. Eckenrode, E. Prather, and C. Wallace, Research and Teaching: Correlations Between Students' Written Responses to Lecture-Tutorial Questions and Their Understandings of Key Astrophysics Concepts, J. Coll. Sci. Teaching 045 (03), (2016).
- L. Ivanjek, P. Shaffer, L. McDermott, M. Planinic, and D. Veza, Research as a guide for curriculum development: An example from introductory spectroscopy. I. Identifying student difficulties with atomic emission spectra, Am. J. Phys. 83 (1), 85 (2014).
- E. Prather, A. Rudolph, G. Brissenden, and W. Schlingman, A national study assessing the teaching and learning of introductory astronomy. Part I. The effect of interactive instruction, Am. J. Phys. 77 (4), 320 (2009).
- A. Rudolph, E. Prather, G. Brissenden, D. Consiglio, and V. Gonzaga, A National Study Assessing the Teaching and Learning of Introductory Astronomy Part II: The Connection between Student Demographics and Learning, Astron. Educ. Rev. 9 (1), (2010).
- W. Schlingman, E. Prather, C. Wallace, A. Rudolph, and G. Brissenden, A Classical Test Theory Analysis of the Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory National Study Data Set, Astron. Educ. Rev. 11 (1), 101 (2012).
- C. Wallace, T. Chambers, and E. Prather, Item response theory evaluation of the Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory national data set, Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 14 (1), 010149 (2018).
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Typical results from Prather et al. 2009:
Plot of normalized gain <g> vs. average pre-test percentage for all 69 class sections in the study. The different symbols represent the four different types of institutions at which the classes were taught. The shaded region represents the range of pre-test scores and normalized gain seen by Hake for college-level classes in his study of introductory physics classes.
The latest version version of the LSCI, released in 2006, is version 1.