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Learner Centered Astronomy College Teaching Excellence Workshop 9:00am

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Title: Learner Centered Astronomy College Teaching Excellence Workshop 9:00am


1
Learner Centered Astronomy College Teaching
Excellence Workshop 900am 500pm
2
Learner Centered Astronomy A Teaching
Excellence Workshop
  • Ed Prather and Gina Brissenden
  • University of Arizona
  • Center for Astronomy Education (CAE)
  • Sponsored by the NSF CCLI PHASE III CATS Program
    and the NASA Navigator Public Engagement Programs
    and NASA Spitzer EPO
  •  
  • http//astronomy101.jpl.nasa.gov

3
Special Thanks To
  • NASA CCLI Phase III C.A.T.S Program
  • CATS NASA JPL Navigator Public Engagement and
    Spitzer EPO
  • NSF Geosciences Education 9907755
  • NSF DUE CCLI 9952232
  •  
  • NSF Chautauqua
  •  
  • Pearson Publishing, Brooks Cole Publishing
  •   

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NOTE
  • You are free to take a bathroom/walk-around break
    any time you wish
  • Please do not check email or surf the web during
    sessions (tempting as it is)
  • If you can, please disconnect from the outside
    world (turn off cell phones)

8
Pre-Workshop Questionnaire
  • We want your initial ideas!
  • No Really Be Honest!
  •   

9
Introductions
  • Take 10 seconds to tell us a little about
    yourself

10
As Yet Unanswered Burning Questions
11
Expectations
  • This is an important time to share and to learn
  • Engage yourself in as many discussions as
    possible (among the participants and presenters,
    there is enormous expertise and experience around
    the room)
  • Critically examine your own beliefs about
    teaching and learning and respectfully question
    others rationale
  • If you didnt learn anything new in a particular
    session, you may need to engage more actively!

12
What we will NOT be able to cover
  • Defend the educational research that suggests the
    majority of introductory science courses are
    ineffective at developing rich conceptual
    understanding
  • Explain why students today are not as motivated
    or as prepared as they were when we were in
    school
  • Tell you how to improve your teaching evaluations
    from students
  • Debate about your class content choices, your
    textbook choices, labs, etc.

13
You need YOU to be a part of all this!!!!
  • Attendance is strongly encouraged
  • Audience participation
  • Demos are sometimes life-threatening

Eventually, Billy came to dread his fathers
lectures over all other forms of punishment.
14
Astro 101 Setting the Academic Bar
  • Do your best to work through these questions
    which are used in our Learner-Centered Astro 101
    course.
  • Do your students ever achieve this level of
    understanding?
  • WHY?
  •   

15
Some Quotes to Frame Our Teaching and Their
Learning
16
The best learners often make the worst
teachers. They are, in a very real sense,
perceptually challenged. They cannot imagine
what it must be like to struggle to learn
something that comes so naturally to them.
  • Stephen Brookfield

17
Lecture has often been described as the process
of taking the information contained in the
teachers notes and transferring them into the
students notes without the information passing
through the brains of either
18
Memorization is what we resort to when what we
are learning makes no sense.
  • Anonymous

19
The fatal pedagogical error is to give answers to
students who do not yet have questions
20
What we need to learn before doing, we learn by
doing
  • Aristotle

21
A mind is a fire to be kindled, not a vessel to
be filled
  • Plutarch

22
Thinking is the hardest thing in the world to do.
That's why so few people engage in it.
  • Henry Ford

23
Most ideas about teaching are not new, but not
everyone knows the old ideas
  • Euclid

24
It aint what you dont know that is the problem,
its what you already know that aint so
  • Often attributed to Will Rogers and often to Mark
    Twain via Huckleberry Finn

25
It's not what the teacher does that matters
rather, it is what the students do
26
What you are doing is relentlessly searching for
the teachable moment
27
Are you really teaching if no one is learning?
28
  • Our planet is not the center of our solar system.
  • Our solar system is not the center of our galaxy.
  • Our galaxy is not the center of the universe.
  • And we are not the center of learning in our
    class.

29
Getting Our challenges" on the Table
  • Time, time, time!
  • What to leave in and what to take out
  • Knowing what activities are out there and how to
    fit them in my class
  • How to create my own activities
  • Getting students engaged, motivation, beliefs.
  • Math
  • Grading
  • Assessment evaluation

30
Critical Questions
  • What are YOUR beliefs about teaching and learning
    and how do they guide your instruction?
  • How do YOU want your students to be different as
    a result of the experiences you design?
  • What do YOU know about the research on how
    STUDENTS learn?
  • What strategies and resources are available that
    are proven to actively engage students and
    improve their understanding?
  • What evidence would YOU accept that your students
    have made significant gains in conceptual
    understanding, as well as attitudinal and skill
    domains?

31
Our Recent National Study
  • When Fall 2006 to Fall 2007
  • What A national study of learning in Astro 101
    classrooms
  • Why To determine how instructional contexts
    affects student learning
  • How The Light and Spectroscopy Concept
    Inventory (LSCI) was administered pre- and
    post-instruction

A National Study Assessing the Teaching and
Learning of Introductory Astronomy, Part I The
Effect of Interactive Instruction Prather, E.
E., Rudolph, A.L., Brissenden, G., Schlingman,
W.M., American Journal of Physics, 77(4), April
2009.
32
The Instrument the LSCI
  • The Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory
  • 26 multiple-choice questions designed to test
    students conceptual understanding of these
    topics in the context of astronomy
  • The topics of light and spectroscopy were chosen
    because they are common to all Astro 101 courses

Development of the Light and Spectra Concept
Inventory, Bardar, Erin M. (Weeks), Prather, E.
E., Bresher, Kenneth and Slater, T. F. Astronomy
Education Review, 5(2), 2007.
33
Light and Spectroscopy Concept Inventory (LSCI)
Concept Domains
Use the Luminosity vs. Temperature graph to
determine the correct ranking for the sizes
(diameters) of the 3 stars H, J, and K from
LARGEST to SMALLEST.
  • H J gt K
  • H gt J gt K
  • J gt H gt K
  • J gt K gt H
  • K J gt H

34
Participants
  • Almost 4000 students
  • 31 institutions
  • 36 instructors
  • 69 different sections
  • Section sizes vary from lt10 to 180

35
This was a truly national study
36
Implementation is Key
37
post - pre
ltggt
100 - pre
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Instructor Surveys
  • To assess the level of interactivity in each
    classroom, we asked each instructor to fill out a
    survey detailing how they spent their class time
  • This survey was used to construct an
    Interactivity Assessment Score (IAS) based on
    what percentage of total class time is used for
    interactive activities

41
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Rutherfords attitudes are common among Physicists
  • All science is either physics or stamp collecting
  • The only possible conclusion that social sciences
    can draw is some do, some don't
  • If your result needs a statistician then you
    should design a better experiment

43
Higher IAS (gt25)
Lower IAS (lt25)
Medium level ltggt gt 0.30
44
Higher IAS (gt25) ltggtavg 0.29
Lower IAS (lt25) ltggtavg 0.13
45
Demographic Survey
  • We also asked 15 demographic questions to allow
    us to determine how such factors as
  • Gender
  • Ethnicity
  • English as a native language
  • Parental education
  • Overall GPA
  • Major
  • Number of prior science courses
  • Level of mathematical preparation
  • interact with instructional context to influence
    student conceptual learning
  • This survey also gives us a snapshot of who is
    taking Astro 101 in the US

46
  • We conducted a full multivariate modeling
    analysis of our data
  • We confirm that level of interactivity is the
    single most important variable in explaining the
    variation in gain, even after controlling for all
    other variables

47
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48
The take home message Part I
  • The results of our investigation reveal that the
    positive effects of interactive learning
    strategies apply equally to men and women, across
    ethnicities, for students with all levels of
    prior mathematical preparation and physical
    science course experience, independent of GPA,
    and regardless of primary language. These results
    powerfully illustrate that all categories of
    students can benefit from the effective
    implementation of interactive learning
    strategies.

49
The take home message Part II
  • Implementation is the most important factor to
    success in student learning.
  • More work on professional development of faculty
    is needed if we are to side wide spread adoption
    and proper implementation of research-validated
    instructional strategies.

50
Perspectives on Teaching Astronomy
  • Take a moment, read each statement and then rate
    them (1 5) according to how much they align
    with your beliefs about teaching and learning.

51
Most Important Goals In Astronomy 101
  • American Astronomical Society Chairs Goals
  • Society of College Science Teachers Goals for
    intro-science courses

52
Most Important Goals In Astronomy 101
  • Students Understand the Big Ideas Size and
    Scale, Nature of Light, Spectroscopy, Cosmology
  • Students Understand How Science is Done Nature
    of Science, Scientific Method, Weaknesses of
    Pseudoscience, Careers
  • Students Develop Positive Attitudes and Life-Long
    Learning Interests in Astronomy Read Newspaper
    Articles, Watch TV Shows, Visit their Local
    Planetarium, Desire to Look Through Telescopes

Slater, Adams, Brissenden, and Duncan, What We
Teach in ASTRO 101, The Physics Teacher, January
2001.
53
What Syllabi Analysis Shows Are Mostly Taught
in ASTRO 101
  1. Nature of Light and the Electromagnetic Spectrum
  2. Techniques in Astronomy
  3. Cosmology and the Big Bang
  4. Tools and Telescopes
  5. The Solar System
  6. Our Sun
  7. Motions in the Solar System
  1. Moon Phases
  2. Stellar Evolution
  3. Characteristics of the Milky Way
  4. Naked Eye Astronomy
  5. Stellar Magnitudes
  6. Stellar Spectral Classification
  • Slater, Adams, Brissenden, and Duncan, What We
    Teach in ASTRO 101, The Physics Teacher, January
    2001.

54
Most Important Goals In Astronomy 101
  • BOTTOM LINE Clearly defining your goals,
    course objectives and learning outcomes is an
    essential element for developing an effective
    ASTRO 101 course So let your students in on
    your secret!!

55
Do you really want to know what your students
think?
56
What Students Are Expecting from Astronomy
101? Possible Survey Questions What made you
decide to take this course? What do you expect
to learn in this course?
57
What made you decide to take this course? in
order of frequency
  • interested in astronomy
  • fun sounding course
  • recommendation by peer, advisor or orientation
    leader
  • required general education fulfillment
  • required for major or minor
  • was available in the schedule
  • inflate grade point average

58
What do you expect to learn in this course?
  • stars
  • constellations
  • planets
  • galaxies
  • black holes
  • solar system
  • comets
  • asteroids

Moon Sun weather atmosphere UFOs and the
unexplained
59
Basic Premise
  • Professor-centered lectures, no matter how
    entertaining, can only go so far in helping
    students learn. It is our premise that the most
    effective courses are learner-centered courses
    which provide clearly stated course goals and
    learning objectives, use interactive teaching
    approaches to continually engage students, and
    use a variety of assessment strategies. 

60
So why doesnt lecture work? OR Are you really
teaching if no one is learning?
61
The Montillation of Traxoline
  • It is very important that you learn about
    traxoline. Traxoline is a new form of zionter. It
    is montilled in Ceristanna. The Ceristannians
    gristerlate large amounts of fevon and then
    brachter it to quasel traxoline. Traxoline may
    well be one of our most lukized snezlaus in the
    future because of our zionter lescelidge.
  • (attributed to the insight of Judy Lanier)

62
The Montillation of Traxoline
  • It is very important that you learn about
    traxoline. Traxoline is a new form of zionter. It
    is montilled in Ceristanna. The Ceristannians
    gristerlate large amounts of fevon and then
    brachter it to quasel traxoline. Traxoline may
    well be one of our most lukized snezlaus in the
    future because of our zionter lescelidge.
  • Directions Answer the following questions in
    complete sentences. Be sure to use your best
    handwriting.

1. What is traxoline? 2. Where is traxoline
montilled? 3. How is traxoline quaselled? 4.
Why is it important to know about traxoline?
63
from How People Learn
  • Students enter your lecture hall with
    preconceptions about how the world works. If
    their initial understanding is not engaged, they
    may fail to grasp the new concepts and
    information that are taught, or they may learn
    them for the purposes of a test but revert to
    their preconceptions outside the classroom

HOW PEOPLE LEARN, National Research Council,
National Academy Press, 2000.
64
A Commonly Held Inaccurate Model of a Students
Conceptual Framework
65
A Commonly Held Inaccurate Model of Teaching and
Learning
66
Student (mis)-Understandings the beliefs and
reasoning difficulties students bring to the
classroom
  • Alternative Conceptions
  • Robust, locally consistent, naturally acquired,
    historically rooted, common default position
  • Reasoning Difficulties
  • Misapplied details of underdeveloped conceptual
    models confusion between model results and the
    model itself
  • Stuff they cant name (or simply name
    incorrectly)

67
What do students struggle with?
  • The Big Three
  • Seasons
  • Moon Phases
  • Gravity
  • Modern Topics Too
  • Stellar Formation
  • Cosmology
  • Astrobiology

A Review of Astronomy Education Research,
Astronomy Education Review, 2(2), 2003. J.M.
Bailey and T.F. Slater
68
Two Models Of Students Understanding
Misconception Model
Primitives Model
69
Fundamental reasoning elements
  • When children touch something on the stove, they
    learn that temperature increases with decreasing
    distance
  • When children hear a cars horn, they learn that
    sound intensity increases with decreasing
    distance
  • When children see a bright flashlight, they learn
    that brightness increases with decreasing
    distance
  • ? CLOSE MEANS MORE

70
How Do p-prims Influence the Teaching and
Learning of Astronomy?
CLOSE MEANS MORE Its hotter in the summer because we are closer to the Sun
INTERFERENCE I cant see all of the Moon because the Earth is in the way
OHMS P-PRIM All bright stars must be very hot
71
Current State of Affairs
  • Students have strongly held naive ideas and
    reasoning difficulties related to the topics we
    teach
  • Students find introductory science courses to be
    boring, irrelevant, and incongruous with the
    stated course goals of nature of science
  • Active Engagement learning approaches produce
    significant and long-lasting learning gains
    compared to even the most entertaining of lectures

72
Key results from research into education and
cognition
  • Learning is productive / constructive - learning
    requires mental effort.
  • Knowledge is associative / linked to prior mental
    models and cognitive structures.
  • The cognitive response is context dependent
    what and how you learn depends on the educational
    setting.
  • Most people require some social interactions in
    order to learn deeply and effectively.

73
Our Assumptions
  • The introductory course for non-science majors
    could be significantly improved
  • Although the lecture approach is largely
    insufficient, there are instructional strategies
    available to accompany lecture that
    intellectually engage students
  • Large enrollment courses can use learner-centered
    instructional strategies
  • Awareness of and exposure to active learning
    techniques will motivate faculty to try them

74
Active Learning
  • Active learning is when students take active
    responsibility for participating in and
    monitoring of their own learning by engaging in
    critical reasoning about the ideas presented in
    the class.

75
What Can I do Besides Lecture to Engage Students
in their Learning?
  • Ask students questions (not all questions are
    equal). Use demonstrations (interactive lecture
    demos)
  • Surprise quizzes (graded/ungraded)
  • In-class writing (with/without discussion) -
    muddiest point - summary of today's main points -
    5-minute free writing
  • Think-Pair-Share (Peer Instruction-ConcepTests)
  • Small Group Interactions (closed/open in/out of
    class)
  • Student Debates (individual/group)
  • Whole Class Discussions

76
What Can I do Besides Lecture to Engage Students
in their Learning?
  • Ask students questions (not all questions are
    equal). Use demonstrations (interactive lecture
    demos)
  • Surprise quizzes (graded/ungraded)
  • In-class writing (with/without discussion) -
    muddiest point - summary of today's main points -
    5-minute free writing
  • Think-Pair-Share (Peer Instruction-ConcepTests)
  • Small Group Interactions (closed/open in/out of
    class)
  • Student Debates (individual/group)
  • Whole Class Discussions

77
Ways to Screw Up Your Lecture
  1. Insufficient "Wait-Time"
  2. The Rapid-Reward
  3. The Programmed Answer
  4. Non-Specific Feedback Questions
  5. Teacher's Ego-Stroking Classroom Climate
  6. Fixation at a Low-Level of Questioning

78
Promoting a higher level of engagement and
feedback when doing demos and using media in the
classroom
  • The teachable moment is extended when students
    thinking is made explicit and held accountable
    BEFORE an outcome is provided. This is your
    chance to make connections and build a desire for
    the answers your classroom activity will display.
  • Tobias, S. Revitalizing Undergraduate Science-Why
    Some Things Work and Most Dont, Research
    Corporation, 1992.
  • Sokoloff, David and Ronald Thornton, Using
    Interactive Lecture Demonstrations to Create an
    Active Learning Environment, The Physics Teacher
    35, 340-347 (1997).

79
Check out this amazing Demo using an amazing
Movie Coolcosmos.ipac.caltech.edu
80
What Can I do Besides Lecture to Engage Students
in their Learning?
  • Ask students questions (not all questions are
    equal). Use demonstrations (interactive lecture
    demos)
  • Surprise quizzes (graded/ungraded)
  • In-class writing (with/without discussion) -
    muddiest point - summary of today's main points -
    5-minute free writing
  • Think-Pair-Share (Peer Instruction-ConcepTests)
  • Small Group Interactions (closed/open in/out of
    class)
  • Student Debates (individual/group)
  • Whole Class Discussions

81
What Can I do Besides Lecture to Engage Students
in their Learning?
  • Ask students questions (not all questions are
    equal). Use demonstrations (interactive lecture
    demos)
  • Surprise quizzes (graded/ungraded)
  • In-class writing (with/without discussion) -
    muddiest point - summary of today's main points -
    5-minute free writing
  • Think-Pair-Share (Peer Instruction-ConcepTests)
  • Small Group Interactions (closed/open in/out of
    class)
  • Student Debates (individual/group)
  • Whole Class Discussions
  • Jigsawing

82
Some Examples of Writing Prompts
  • Illustrate the meaning of "standard candle" using
    one example taken from everyday life and one
    example from astronomy.
  • What about the enterprise of science makes it
    different than business?
  • If we establish communication with an
    intelligent, extraterrestrial civilization, who
    should speak for Earth and what should
    he/she/they say?
  • What were the most important ideas we learned
    about today?
  • What do you need to do to get high grades in this
    course and what will you do differently before
    the next exam?

83
What Can I do Besides Lecture to Engage Students
in their Learning?
  • Ask students questions (not all questions are
    equal). Use demonstrations (interactive lecture
    demos)
  • Surprise quizzes (graded/ungraded)
  • In-class writing (with/without discussion) -
    muddiest point - summary of today's main points -
    5-minute free writing
  • Think-Pair-Share (Peer Instruction-ConcepTests)
  • Small Group Interactions (closed/open in/out of
    class)
  • Student Debates (individual/group)
  • Whole Class Discussions

84
Think-Pair-Share or Peer Instruction
  • How using a combination of conceptually
    challenging questions, classroom feedback and
    student-to-student discussions can increase
    understanding and provide data on students
    learning for you and them.

Crouch, C. H. Mazur, E. 2001, Peer
Instruction Ten Years of Experience and
Results, American Journal of Physics, 69(9),
970, 2001 Development and Application of a
Situated Apprenticeship Approach to Professional
Development of Astronomy Instructors, Prather, E.
E., and Brissenden, G. The Astronomy Education
Review, 7(2), 2008 Clickers as Data Gathering
Tools and Students Attitudes, Motivations, and
Beliefs on Their Use in this Application,
Prather, E. E., Brissenden, G., The Astronomy
Education Review, 8 (1), 2009 .
85
Effective Multiple Choice Questions
86
Using multiple choice questions provides an
efficient and effective way to assess a wide
range of knowledge, skills, attitudes and
abilities (Haladyna, 1999).
87
Consider your answer to these questions about
writing multiple-choice questions.
  • In a multiple-choice question, when is the
    longest answer the correct answer?
  • Rarely
  • Sometimes
  • Its common for it to be the correct answer,
    and its often stuffed with new information
    that should have gone in the main part of the
    course but we forgot so now were putting it in
    the quiz because we cant possibly leave out
    the tiniest detail
  • Occasionally

Adapted from http//blog.cathy-moore.com/2007/08
/can-you-answer-these-6-questions-about-multiple-c
hoice-questions/
88
Consider your answer to these questions about
writing multiple-choice questions.
  • When is it NOT a good idea to avoid negative
    questions?
  • Never
  • Sometimes
  • Always
  • What?

Adapted from http//blog.cathy-moore.com/2007/08
/can-you-answer-these-6-questions-about-multiple-c
hoice-questions/
89
Consider your answer to these questions about
writing multiple-choice questions.
  • How often is the correct choice A?
  • Usually
  • Frequently
  • Often
  • Almost never, because if A is the right answer,
    then the learner doesnt have to read all the
    other options we spent so much time writing and
    revising, and wheres the return on investment in
    that?

Adapted from http//blog.cathy-moore.com/2007/08
/can-you-answer-these-6-questions-about-multiple-c
hoice-questions/
90
Consider your answer to these questions about
writing multiple-choice questions.
  • When is All of the above the correct answer?
  • With alarming regularity
  • When we try to cover too much in one question
  • When we use a question to teach instead of
    assess
  • All of the above

Adapted from http//blog.cathy-moore.com/2007/08
/can-you-answer-these-6-questions-about-multiple-c
hoice-questions/
91
Consider your answer to these questions about
writing multiple-choice questions.
  • I opened an online course on a topic I know
    nothing about, clicked through without reading
    anything, and took the assessment. I passed! What
    does that suggest?
  • I am a genius!
  • The assessment was too easy.
  • Maybe the online course was too easy, too.
  • Maybe the course didnt even need to be
    written.
  • B, C, and D

Adapted from http//blog.cathy-moore.com/2007/08
/can-you-answer-these-6-questions-about-multiple-c
hoice-questions/
92
Consider your answer to these questions about
writing multiple-choice questions.
  • We can confuse learners when we
  • fail to actually complete the sentence we
    started in the question.
  • inconsistent grammar in the options.
  • sometimes we veer off into another idea
    entirely.
  • wombats.

Adapted from http//blog.cathy-moore.com/2007/08
/can-you-answer-these-6-questions-about-multiple-c
hoice-questions/
93
1. The promiscuous use of sprays, oils, and
antiseptics in the nose during acute colds is a
pernicious practice because it may have a
deleterious effect on A. the sinuses B. red
blood cells C. white blood cells D. the
olfactory nerve
2. Frequent use of sprays, oils, and antiseptics
in the nose during a bad cold may result in A.
the spreading of the infection to the sinuses B.
damage to the olfactory nerve C. destruction of
white blood cells D. congestion of the mucous
membrane in the nose
94
1. In 1965, the death rate from accidents of all
types per 100,000 population in the 15-24 age
group was A. 59.0 B. 59.1 C. 59.2 D. 59.3
  • 2. In 1965, the leading cause of death per
    100,000 population in the 15-24 age group was
    from
  • respiratory disease
  • rheumatic heart disease
  • accidents
  • cancer

95
1. About how many calories are recommended daily
for a 14-year old who is 62 in. tall, weighs 103
lbs., and is moderately active? A. 1,500 B.
2,000 C. 2,500 D. 3,000
2. About how many calories are recommended daily
for a 14-year old who is 62 in. tall, weighs 103
lbs., and is moderately active? A. 0 B 500
C. 2500 D. 10,000
96
Limitations to MC Questions and Tests
  • Constructing good items (stem and choices) is
    difficult and time consuming.
  • It is difficult to find/create plausible
    distracters.
  • Ineffective for measuring some types of problem
    solving and the ability to organize and express
    ideas. Real-world problem solving involves
    proposing a solution versus selecting a solution
    from a set of alternatives.
  • There is a lack of feedback on individual thought
    processes it can be difficult to determine why
    individual students selected incorrect responses.
  • Often MC questions focus on factual information
    and fails to assess higher levels of cognitive
    thinking.
  • They place a high degree of dependence on the
    students reading ability and the instructors
    writing ability. Students can sometimes read more
    into the question than was intended.
  • May encourage guessing.

97
Strengths of MC Questions and Tests
  • - Learning outcomes from simple to complex can
    be measured.
  • - Incorrect alternatives provide diagnostic
    information.
  • - Scores are less influenced by guessing than
    true-false items.
  • - Scoring is easy, objective, and reliable.
  • Can cover a lot of material very efficiently
  • Item analysis can reveal how difficult each item
    was and how well it discriminates between the
    strong and weaker students
  • Performance can be compared from class to class
    and year to year

98
Helpful Hints to Constructing Questions and
Tests?
  • Base each item on an educational or
    instructional objective of the course, not
    trivial information.
  • Try to write items in which there is one and
    only one correct or clearly best answer.
  • The phrase that introduces the item (stem)
    should clearly state the problem.
  • Test only a single idea in each item.
  • Be sure wrong answer choices (distracters) are
    at least plausible.
  • Incorporate common student naïve ideas or
    reasoning difficulties in distracters.
  • The position of the correct answer should vary
    randomly from item to item.
  • Include from three to five options for each
    item.
  • Avoid overlapping alternatives
  • The length of the response options should be
    about the same within each item (preferably
    short).

99
Helpful Hints to Constructing Questions and
Tests?
  • There should be no grammatical clues to the
    correct answer.
  • Word the stem positively avoid negative
    phrasing such as not or except. If this
    cannot be avoided, the negative words should
    always be highlighted by underlining or
    capitalization Which of the following is NOT an
    example
  • Avoid the excessive use of All of the above
    and None of the above in the response
    alternatives. In the case of All of the above,
    students only need to know that two of the
    options are correct (in a four or more option
    question) to determine that All of the above is
    the correct answer choice. Conversely, students
    only need to eliminate one answer choice as
    implausible in order to eliminate All of the
    above as an answer choice. Similarly, with None
    of the above, when used as the correct answer
    choice, information is gained about students
    ability to detect incorrect answers. However, the
    item does not reveal if students know the correct
    answer to the question.

100
Do the questions you use intellectually
challenging your students or simply asses their
factual knowledge?
Blooms Taxonomy of Educational Objectives
evaluation
synthesis
analysis
application
comprehension
declarative knowledge
An Assessment Primer for Introductory Astronomy.
Astronomy Education Review, 1(1), 1-24, 2002. G.
Brissenden, T.F. Slater, and R. Matheiu.
101
  • Around which object does the Moon orbit?
  • Earth
  • Mars
  • Jupiter
  • Saturn

102
You look to the western horizon as the Moon
is rising and discover that it is in the new moon
phase. Later that same day when the moon is
setting, which of the moon phases shown below
would the Moon have looked like?
103
  • You look to the west at 10am and see the moon on
    the horizon. What is the phase of the moon that
    will be high in the sky in three weeks?
  • Waning Gibbous
  • Waxing crescent
  • New
  • Waxing Gibbous
  • Waning Crescent

104
  • Six hours after the moon rises where would you
    look to see it?
  • North
  • East
  • South
  • West

105
  • If the Moon is in the Waxing Gibbous phase today,
    approximately how long will it be until the Moon
    is in the Waxing Crescent phase?
  • a day
  • one week
  • three weeks
  • two weeks
  • a month

106
  • If the moon is in the waxing gibbous phase today,
    how many of the moon phases shown above (A-E)
    would the moon go through during the next 11
    days.
  • only one
  • Two
  • Three
  • more than three
  • none

107
Which of the situations shown above occurs at a
time closest to sunset?
108
  • Which of the following groups of moon phases can
    be above the horizon at 4pm?
  • Full, Waning Crescent, and Waxing Gibbous
  • New Moon, First Quarter, and Waxing Gibbous
  • Waxing Gibbous, Full Moon, Waning Gibbous
  • Waxing Crescent, Third Quarter, Waxing Gibbous
  • None. The moon is only visible above the horizon
    during the night time.

109
Item Difficulty computed as the proportion of
students who got the item correct. So a low value
means a hard question and a high value means an
easy question on a scale from 0.00 to 1.00. It is
best to have a mix of difficulties some hard
ones to challenge top students some easy ones so
low-performing students will persist and the
bulk of items at a moderate difficulty level. The
average item difficulty across a test, for most
multiple-choice types, should be between 0.6 and
0.7 (Gronlund Linn, 1990).
Item Discrimination How well does the item
differentiate among students who have mastered
the content and students who have not? This is
calculated either as a correlation coefficient
between the item score and the total score or as
a proportion of high-scoring student who got the
item right to low-scoring students who got the
item right. Either way, it is expressed on a
scale from -1.00 to 1.00. Negative 1 means all
low scorers got the item right and all high
scorers got the item wrong. Given that we want
students who have mastered the content getting
each item correct, that's bad. A positive 1 means
the item worked exactly as it should. A zero
means the item doesn't distinguish between
mastery and non-mastery students. That's also
bad. There are a number of statistical issues at
work that cause 1.00 to be a rare occurrence, so
that a reasonable expectation for item
discrimination indices is between 0.3 and 0.5
(Oosterhof, 2001).
110
Distracter Analysis this approach looks to see
who is choosing each option for an item. Usually
the examinees are divided into low-scoring and
high-scoring groups, and the proportion of each
choosing each option is reported. High-scoring
students will usually pick the correct response
and low scoring students will usually pick a
distracter. If the opposite happens, that's a cue
to revise the item. Something about a distracter
is attracting high performance students
(Oosterhof, 2001).
Reliability Coefficient Reliability is the
degree of accuracy present in the score. For
multiple-choice tests, this is indexed using a
reliability coefficient like Cronbach's Alpha.
Both range from 0.00 to 1.00 with higher values
indicating higher reliability. Though there are
not strict cutoffs for "acceptable" reliability
coefficients, 0.60 to 0.70 are generally
considered acceptable lower values (Oosterhof,
2001). Having most item discrimination values at
or near .50, having a variety of item
difficulties, and having more items will all
increase estimates of reliability (Gronlund,
1988 Nitko, 2001 Oosterhof, 2001). In essence,
you are calculating internal correlations of
student responses between individual items.
111
Class Response System Low Tech
?????
112
Personal Responder Devices
  • What are responders?
  • IR or Radio wireless voting device
  • Sometimes referred to as Classroom Communication
    Systems (CCS), clickers, etc.

113
Class Response System Low Tech
114
  • Which of the descriptions given below best
    describes the sign a person will have if born on
    that day?

A. Taurus is high in the southern sky at
sunset. B. Aquarius is on the eastern horizon at
sunrise. C. Scorpius is on the western horizon at
noon. D. Leo is high in the southern sky at
midnight.
115
Think - Pair - Share?
Which of the following is the correct ranking for
the size of the objects A-E, from largest to
smallest. A) EAgtCBgtD B) DBgtCgtAE C)
DgtBCgtAgtE D) EgtAgtCBgtD E) None of the above
116
1
Orbit of star
20
Radial Velocity
4
2
Time
-20
Orbit of planet
3
  • Given the location marked on the star's radial
    velocity curve, at what location in the planet's
    orbit would you expect the planet to be?

117
Think - Pair - Share?
  • - Star A will be a main sequence star for
    4.5 billion years.
  • - Star B has the same luminosity as the Sun.
  • - Star C has a spectral type of M5.
  • Which of the following is a true statement about
    these stars?
  • Star A has the greatest mass.
  • Star B has the greatest mass.
  • Star C has the greatest mass.
  • Stars A, B and C all have approximately the same
    mass.
  • There is insufficient information to determine
    this.

118
Think - Pair - Share?
  • Which of the following is true of a binary star
    system consisting of a Red Giant and a White
    Dwarf?
  • You will receive more energy when the dwarf is
    behind the giant than when the giant is behind
    the dwarf.
  • The time it takes for the dwarf to pass behind
    the giant is shorter than the time for the giant
    to pass behind the dwarf.
  • The force of gravity exerted on the dwarf by
    giant is stronger than the force of gravity
    exerted of the giant on the dwarf.
  • The orbital period of the dwarf is shorter than
    the orbital period of the giant.
  • None of the above.

119
Given that a seed grows into a massive tree,
where does most of the mass of the tree come from?
  • From water
  • From dirt and soil
  • From the air
  • Its already in the seed.

120
Create a suitable questions to use for
think-pair-share?
  • Work with a small group
  • Make sure your question is multiple choice
  • Select a member of your group who will model
    think pair share using your question
  • On the topic of

121
If We Can Articulate What Learner-Centered
Instruction Is How It Improves Student
Learning, Only Then Can We Be Effective At
Implementation!
  • If you cant discuss it, in your own words, and
    make sense of your beliefs to others, do you
    really understand it?

122
How does learning occur during
think-pair-share? Who is responsible for doing
the learning?
  • What are the learning and instructional goals
    when using TPS (for them and for you)
  • What is needed in terms of the question used?
  • When or why should you or should you NOT give
    answers?

123
Some Ideas TPS
  • When should you use TPS did you provide the
    information they needed?
  • How to explain to students why you do this get
    student buy in
  • Why does it matter if the students talk to each
    other
  • Why does it matter if the questions are MC
  • What is a good MC from a bad MC question?
  • Should you show the results data at the end of
    the first voting before they pair
  • Do you read the question to them?
  • Sweet spot
  • Broadcast time to vote provide time limit
  • Happy spot
  • How do you debrief after second voting? When, if
    ever, do you provide the right answer?
  • Clickers vs Cards and attendance/graded or not?

124
As Yet Unanswered Burning Questions
125
What Can I do Besides Lecture to Engage Students
in their Learning?
  • Ask students questions (not all questions are
    equal). Use demonstrations (interactive lecture
    demos)
  • Surprise quizzes (graded/ungraded)
  • In-class writing (with/without discussion) -
    muddiest point - summary of today's main points -
    5-minute free writing
  • Think-Pair-Share (Peer Instruction-ConcepTests)
  • Small Group Interactions
  • Student Debates (individual/group)
  • Whole Class Discussions
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