P453: Designing a testing effect study with general chemistry test formats

Author: Anna A. Prisacari, Iowa State University, USA

Co-Author:

Date: 8/5/14

Time: 9:35 AM9:55 AM

Room: MAK A1151

Related Symposium: S38

Assessment is a critical aspect of the learning environment and considerable research has suggested that testing may not only measure one’s knowledge but also enhances long-term retention. However, there has been less research published in which the benefit of frequent testing was obtained in the classroom with educational materials such as General Chemistry tests. The purpose of this quantitative study was to investigate the effects of test delivery mode, whereby students took first semester General Chemistry practice tests on paper or online. In addition, this study explored the testing effect between the two test formats: multiple-choice and open-ended questions. Such design will help determine whether questions of a particular format and the mode of test delivery produce significant testing effects. The development and implementation of this design will be discussed. This method may assist chemistry instructors in designing accurate assessment practices and building more effectual course curricula.

P314: Investigating the transfer of testing effects across different test formats in the general chemistry settings

Author: Anna A. Prisacari, Iowa State University, USA

Co-Author: Thomas Holme, Iowa State University, USA

Date: 8/4/14

Time: 2:25 PM2:45 PM

Room: LOH 164

Related Symposium: S25

For more than 100 years, psychologists have studied the effects of testing on long-term retention and learning. Considerable research in cognitive psychology has demonstrated that taking a test often improves the later retention of the tested material or the material that relates to the tested information. Most of these studies have been observed in psychology laboratories and the effects have been obtained with materials such as unrelated word pairs, foreign-language vocabulary words, and prose materials. The present research investigated whether the benefits of the testing effect can be transferred to the college classroom setting. To do so, researchers invited subjects from a general chemistry first-semester course to take three practice tests 1 to 14 days before the course’s final examination. The practice tests were delivered via paper and computer. Each test contained an equal amount of multiple-choice and open-ended questions. Feedback was provided to students after each test. The results that will be presented in this session will have important implications for the use of tests as learning opportunities.