ERIC Number: EJ1166895
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jan
Abstractor: As Provided
Characterizing Illusions of Competence in Introductory Chemistry Students
Pazicni, Samuel; Bauer, Christopher F.
Chemistry Education Research and Practice, v15 n1 p24-34 Jan 2014
The Dunning-Kruger effect is a cognitive bias that plagues a particular population of students--the unskilled. This population suffers from illusory competence, as determined by inaccurate ratings of their own ability/performance. These mistakenly high self-ratings (i.e. ''illusions of competence'') are typically explained by a metacognitive deficiency of the unskilled--they simply can't recognize their own mistakes. This work, involving more than a thousand students, nine course sections, and sampling multiple time points over a semester, established the Dunning-Kruger effect as a robust phenomenon in university-level introductory chemistry. Using a combination of graphical analyses and hierarchical linear modeling, we confirmed that low-performing students tend to overestimate their own performance while high-performing students tend to underestimate their performance. We also observed a clear difference between female and male students with regard to these miscalibrations. Lastly, we demonstrated that student miscalibrations are invariant over time, a result that has profound implications for the types of instructor feedback conventionally provided in introductory chemistry courses.
Descriptors: Introductory Courses, Chemistry, Science Instruction, College Science, College Students, Hierarchical Linear Modeling, Correlation, Scores, Statistical Analysis
Royal Society of Chemistry. Thomas Graham House, Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0WF, UK. Tel: +44-1223 420066; Fax: +44-1223 423623; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.rsc.org/cerp
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A