Assessment Recommendations

13 Recommendations are tagged with "Assessment"

Best Practices for Administering Attitudes and Beliefs Surveys in Physics

June 13, 2019 by Adrian Madsen, Sam McKagan, Ellie Sayre; PhysPort director, assistant director, and research director

Physics education researchers have created several surveys to assess one important aspect of thinking like a physicist: what students believe that learning physics is all about. In this article, we introduce attitudes and beliefs surveys and give advice on how to choose, administer, and score them in your classes.

assessment,  beliefs,  best practices

Best Practices for Administering Concept Inventories

May 28, 2019 by Adrian Madsen, Sam McKagan, Ellie Sayre; PhysPort director, assistant director, and research director

There are a plethora of concept inventories in physics available for faculty to use. These multiple-choice research-based tests about physics concepts are valuable because they allow for standardized comparisons among institutions, instructors, or over time. In order for these comparisons to be meaningful, you should use best practices for administering and interpreting the tests.

assessment,  concept inventories,  best practices

Which observation protocols are available online?

January 22, 2019 by Cassandra Paul and Adrian Madsen

Several observation protocols are available on the General Observation and Reflection Platform (GORP). GORP is a secure web-based platform that allows users to customize existing observation protocols, (and create their own protocols), in order to simplify data collection and sharing.

observation protocol,  online tools,  assessment

How can I assess the level of student engagement in my class?

June 20, 2017 by Stephanie Chasteen, University of Colorado Boulder

Instructors who are attempting active learning are often concerned that students won't like it, or will resist. It can be hard, even in the middle of a course, to gauge how well-engaged students are. This fifth chapter of our student engagement series focuses on ways to assess student engagement, both formally and informally. CHAPTER 5: ASSESSMENT

assessment,  active learning,  productive engagement

Addressing common concerns about concept inventories

July 8, 2016 by Adrian Madsen, Sam McKagan and Eleanor Sayre

Concept inventories are useful for assessing the effectiveness of your teaching, but as you use them, concerns and questions often come up. Here we discuss some common concerns about using concept inventories and related research that addresses these concerns.

assessment,  concept inventories

What are some tips for using PhET with homework?

June 28, 2016 by Stephanie Chasteen

PhET simulations are free, online interactive simulations for teaching and learning science.   PhET is ideal for use in homework because the simulations are designed to cue students to explore cause-and-effect relationships, even without an instructor present.

active learning,  PhET Interactive Simulations,  homework,  assessment

Normalized gain: What is it and when and how should I use it?

March 18, 2016 by Sam McKagan, Eleanor Sayre, and Adrian Madsen

Introduction to normalized gain:
The normalized gain, introduced by Hake in 1998 "as a rough measure of the effectiveness of a course in promoting conceptual understanding," has become the standard measure for reporting scores on research-based concept inventories. Hake defined the average normalized gain as:
<g> = (<Post> - <Pre>)/(100 - <Pre>)

assessment,  concept inventories,  normalized gain,  best practices

Effect size: What is it and when and how should I use it?

March 18, 2016 by Adrian Madsen, Eleanor Sayre, and Sam McKagan

When making changes in the way we teach our physics classes, we often want to measure the impact of these changes on our students' learning. Often we do this by administering a research-based assessment at the beginning and end of the class and calculating the change between pre and post. There are several different measures that can be used to tell you, in one number, how to compare learning...

assessment,  concept inventories,  effect size,  best practices

Recursos en Español / Research-based teaching resources in Spanish

March 16, 2016 by Sam McKagan, PhysPort Director

PhysPort es un recurso de internet para apoyar a los profesores de física a utilizar estrategias de enseñanza y evaluación basadas en investigación en sus clases. El sitio es en ingles, pero muchos de los recursos a que se refiere han sido traducido a español. Esta página tiene una lista de recursos para enseñanza y evaluación…

active learning,  assessment,  español

Arguments for skeptical colleagues

February 12, 2016 by Sam McKagan, PhysPort Director

Do your skeptical colleagues question you or ask you to justify your use of research-based teaching methods in physics? This recommendation provides answers to the most frequently asked questions about research-based teaching in physics from your skeptical colleagues.
-What is PER and why should I care?
-What are research-based teaching methods in physics and why should I care?

skeptical colleagues,  physics education research,  active learning,  assessment,  problem-solving

Ten results of physics education research that every physics instructor should know

February 11, 2016 by Sam McKagan, PhysPort Director

This is a draft outline for an article describing the results of physics education research that are most important for practicing physics instructors to know and apply in their classrooms. We will be publishing the results in installments on PhysPort. The goals of this article are to explain the research behind each result in enough detail that readers can easily understand why…

physics education research,  active learning,  assessment,  problem-solving,  beliefs

Administering research-based assessments online

February 10, 2016 by Adrian Madsen & Sam McKagan, PhysPort Assistant Director & Director

Concept inventories such as the Force Concept Inventory (FCI) have had a major impact on physics education reform: The FCI, a test of basic concepts of forces and acceleration, has been given to thousands of students throughout the country and the results show that PER-based teaching methods lead to dramatic improvements in students’ conceptual understanding of mechanics. These…

assessment,  concept inventories,  best practices,  online tools

How can I get my students’ answers to concept inventories into electronic spreadsheets?

February 10, 2016 by Sam McKagan, PhysPort Director

If you are using multiple-choice concept inventories such as the FCI, BEMA, or CLASS to assess your students’ learning, the PhysPort Data Explorer can help you get instant analysis and visualization of your results. In order to use the Data Explorer, you’ll need to have your students’ responses in some kind of electronic spreadsheet, such as an Excel or .csv file.…

assessment,  concept inventories