ERIC Number: ED461516
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001
Reference Count: N/A
Concentration Analysis: A Quantitative Assessment of Student States.
Bao, Lei; Redish, Edward F.
Multiple-choice tests such as the Force Concept Inventory (FCI) provide useful instruments to probe the distribution of student difficulties on a large scale. However, traditional analysis often relies solely on scores (number of students giving the correct answer). This ignores what can be significant and important information: the distribution of wrong answers given by the class. In this paper a new method is introduced called "concentration analysis" to measure how students' responses on multiple-choice questions are distributed. This information can be used to study if the students have common incorrect models or if the question is effective in detecting student models. When combined with information obtained from qualitative research, the method can be used to identify cleanly what FCI results are saying about student knowledge. (Contains 19 references, 9 figures, and 8 tables.) (Author/YDS)
Descriptors: Higher Education, Learning Processes, Memory, Multiple Choice Tests, Physics, Problem Solving, Science Education, Test Interpretation, Test Results, Test Theory
American Journal of Physics (Physics Education Supplement), Kalamazoo College, 1200 Academy Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49006 ($15). For full text: http://www2.physics.umd.edu~redish/Papers/baoCpre.pdf.
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: "Physics Education Research Section of the American Journal of Physics," v69 n7 (July 2001): S45-53. Endnotes contain cropped text.