AAS 199th meeting, Washington, DC, January 2002
Session 80. The Astronomy Diagnostic Test: Development, Results and Applications
Special Session Oral, Tuesday, January 8, 2002, 2:00-3:30pm, Georgetown West

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[80.02] Development of the Astronomy Diagnostic Test

B. Hufnagel (Anne Arundel Community College)

The starting point for questions in the Astronomy Diagnostic Test (ADT) Version 2.0 was two precursor surveys, the STAR Evaluation by Philip M. Sadler and Michael Zeilik’s Astronomy Diagnostic Test Version 1.0. Questions were selected or developed for the new ADT which (1) addressed concepts included in most introductory astronomy courses for non-science majors, (2) included only concepts recognizable to most high-school graduates, (3) focused on one concept only, and (4) stressed concepts and not jargon. This version was administered to about 1000 students at four colleges and universities. The statistical results, e.g., item discrimination, guided re-writing and elimination of questions. Sixty student interviews at Montana State and the University of Maryland, as well as thirty written responses to the questions in open-ended format, were the basis for determining if the questions were interpreted by the students as intended. This student input was also the basis for distractors (wrong answers) reflecting the ideas and the words of the students themselves. After revision, the ADT was administered the next semester to 1557 students enrolled in 22 introductory classes, twenty students were interviewed, and comments solicited from the instructors of those classes. The result was the final ADT Version 2.0, which consists of 21 content and 12 student background multiple-choice questions. This work has been partly supported by NSF grant # DGE-9714489.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://www.aacc.cc.md.us/scibrhufnagel. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: brhufnagel@mail.aacc.cc.md.us

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