Developing and Using Distractor-Driven Multiple-Choice Assessments Aligned to Ideas About Energy Forms, Transformation, Transfer, and Conservation

Chapter

Abstract

This chapter presents a summary of middle and high school students’ understanding of energy and the differences and similarities in the ideas that the middle and high school students hold. The student data are a result of the field testing of items aligned to ideas about forms of energy, energy transformations, energy transfer, and conservation of energy that were administered to 23,744 middle and high school students in 48 states across the U.S. between 2009 and 2010. Rasch modeling was used to analyze the data, and the data had a good fit to the model. Analysis of covariance, controlling for gender and English as the student’s primary language, showed a steady increase in student understanding of key energy concepts between 7th and 12th grades. Option probability curves provided additional information about the progression of students’ understanding of energy concepts and the persistence of a number of energy-related misconceptions.

References

  1. American Association for the Advancement of Science. (1993). Benchmarks for science literacy. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  2. American Association for the Advancement of Science. (2001). Atlas of science literacy, volume 1. Washington, DC: AAAS/NSTA.Google Scholar
  3. American Association for the Advancement of Science. (2007). Atlas of science literacy, volume 2. Washington, DC: AAAS/NSTA.Google Scholar
  4. American Association for the Advancement of Science. (2013). AAAS Project 2061 Science Assessment website. Retrieved October 31, 2012. Available from http://assessment.aaas.org/
  5. Bond, T. G., & Fox, C. M. (2007). Applying the Rasch model: Fundamental measurement in the human sciences (2nd ed.). Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  6. Brook, A., & Driver, R. (1984). Aspects of secondary students’ understanding of energy: Full report. Leeds: The University of Leeds, Centre for Studies in Science Education and Mathematics Education.Google Scholar
  7. Brook, A., Briggs, H., Bell, B., & Driver, R. (1984). Aspects of secondary students’ understanding of heat: Full report. Leeds: The University of Leeds, Centre for Studies in Science Education and Mathematics Education.Google Scholar
  8. Chabalengula, V. M., Sanders, M., & Frackson, M. (2012). Diagnosing students’ understanding of energy and its related concepts in biological context. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 10(2), 241–266.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Clough, E., & Driver, R. (1985). Secondary students’ conceptions of the conduction of heat: Bringing together scientific and personal views. Physics Education, 20(4), 176–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. DeBoer, G. E., Herrmann-Abell, C. F., & Gogos, A. (2007, March–April). Assessment linked to science learning goals: Probing student thinking during item development. Paper presented at the National Association for Research in Science Teaching annual conference, New Orleans, LA.Google Scholar
  11. DeBoer, G. E., Herrmann-Abell, C. F., Gogos, A., Michiels, A., Regan, T., & Wilson, P. (2008a). Assessment linked to science learning goals: Probing student thinking through assessment. In J. Coffey, R. Douglas, & C. Stearns (Eds.), Assessing student learning: Perspectives from research and practice (pp. 231–252). Arlington: NSTA Press.Google Scholar
  12. DeBoer, G. E., Lee, H. S., & Husic, F. (2008b). Assessing integrated understanding of science. In Y. Kali, M. C. Linn, & J. E. Roseman (Eds.), Coherent science education: Implications for curriculum, instruction, and policy (pp. 153–182). New York: Columbia University Teachers College Press.Google Scholar
  13. Finegold, M., & Trumper, R. (1989). Categorizing pupils’ explanatory frameworks in energy as a means to the development of a teaching approach. Research in Science Education, 19(1), 97–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Fischbein, E., Stavy, R., & Ma-Naim, H. (1989). The psychological structure of naive impetus conceptions. International Journal of Science Education, 11(3), 327–336.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Fortus, D., Krajcik, J. S., Nordine, J. C., Plummer, J., Rogat, A., & Switzer, A. C. (2005). How can I use trash to power my stereo? Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Center for Highly Interactive Classrooms, Curricula, & Computing in Education.Google Scholar
  16. Fortus, D., Weizman, A., Nordine, J., Jin, H., & Abdel-Kareem, H. (2012). Why do some things stop and others keep going? In J. Krajcik, B. Reiser, D. Fortus, L. Sutherland, & D. Fortus (Eds.), Investigating and questioning our world through science and technology (IQWST). Norwalk: Sangari Active Science.Google Scholar
  17. Herrmann-Abell, C. F., & DeBoer, G. E. (2009, April). Using content-aligned assessment to probe middle school students’ understanding of ideas about energy. Paper presented at the National Association for Research in Science Teaching annual conference, Garden Grove, CA.Google Scholar
  18. Herrmann-Abell, C. F., & DeBoer, G. E. (2010, March). Probing middle and high school students’ understanding of energy transformation, energy transfer, and conservation of energy using content-aligned assessment items. Paper presented at the National Association for Research in Science Teaching annual conference, Philadelphia, PA.Google Scholar
  19. Kesidou, S., & Duit, R. (1993). Students’ conceptions of the second law of thermodynamics – An interpretive study. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 30(1), 85–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Kruger, C. (1990). Some primary teachers’ ideas about energy. Physics Education, 25(2), 86–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kruger, C., Palacino, D., & Summers, M. (1992). Surveys of English primary teachers’ conceptions of force, energy, and materials. Science Education, 76(4), 339–351.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Lee, H. S., & Liu, O. L. (2010). Assessing learning progression of energy concepts across middle school grades: The knowledge integration perspective. Science Education, 94(4), 665–688.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Leggett, M. (2003). Lessons that non-scientists can teach us about the concept of energy: A human-centered approach. Physics Education, 38(2), 130–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Linacre, J. M. (2012). Winsteps® (Version 3.75.0) [Computer Software]. Beaverton: Winsteps.com. Retrieved from http://www.winsteps.com/
  25. Liu, X., & Boone, W. J. (2006). Introduction to Rasch measurement in science education. In X. Liu & W. J. Boone (Eds.), Applications of Rasch measurement in science education (pp. 1–22). Maple Grove: JAM Press.Google Scholar
  26. Liu, X., & Collard, S. (2005). Using the Rasch model to validate stages of understanding the energy concept. Journal of Applied Measurement, 6(2), 224–241.Google Scholar
  27. Liu, X., & McKeough, A. (2005). Developmental growth in students’ concept of energy: Analysis of selected items from the TIMSS database. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 42(5), 493–517.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Loverude, M. E. (2004, August). Student understanding of gravitational potential energy and the motion of bodies in a gravitational field. Paper presented at the Physics Education Research conference, California State University, Sacramento, CA.Google Scholar
  29. McCloskey, M. (1983). Intuitive physics. Scientific American, 248(4), 122–130.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. National Research Council. (1996). National science education standards. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  31. National Research Council. (2012). A framework for K-12 science education: Practices, crosscutting concepts, and core ideas. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.Google Scholar
  32. Neumann, K., Viering, T., Boone, W. J., & Fischer, H. E. (2012). Towards a learning progression of energy. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 50(2), 162–188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Newell, A., & Ross, K. (1996). Children’s conception of thermal conduction – Or the story of a woolen hat. School Science Review, 78(282), 33–38.Google Scholar
  34. Nicholls, G., & Ogborn, J. (1993). Dimensions of children’s conceptions of energy. International Journal of Science Education, 15(1), 73–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Papadouris, N., Constantinou, C. P., & Kyratsi, T. (2008). Students’ use of the energy model to account for changes in physical systems. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 45(4), 444–469.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Rasch, G. (1960). Probabilistic models for some intelligence and attainment tests. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  37. Sadler, P. M. (1998). Psychometric models of student conceptions in science: Reconciling qualitative studies and distractor-driven assessment instruments. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 35(3), 265–296.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Solomon, J. (1983). Messy, contradictory and obstinately persistent: A study of children’s out-of-school ideas about energy. School Science Review, 65(231), 225–229.Google Scholar
  39. Stead, B. (1980). Energy (Working Paper No. 17). In Learning in science project. Hamilton: Science Education Research Unit, University of Waikato.Google Scholar
  40. Stern, L., & Ahlgren, A. (2002). Analysis of students’ assessments in middle school curriculum materials: Aiming precisely at benchmarks and standards. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 39(9), 889–910.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Summers, M., & Kruger, C. (1993). Long term impact of a new approach to teacher education for primary science. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the British Educational Research Association, Liverpool, England.Google Scholar
  42. Trumper, R. (1990). Being constructive: An alternative approach to the teaching of the energy concept – Part one. International Journal of Science Education, 12(4), 343–354.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Trumper, R. (1993). Children’s energy concepts: A cross-age study. International Journal of Science Education, 15(2), 139–148.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Trumper, R. (1998). A longitudinal study of physics students’ conceptions of energy in preservice training for high school teachers. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 7(4), 311–318.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Trumper, R., & Gorsky, P. (1993). Learning about energy: The influence of alternative frameworks, cognitive levels, and closed-mindedness. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 30(7), 637–648.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. U.S. Department of Energy. (2012). Energy literacy: Essential principles and fundamental concepts for energy education. Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  47. Watts, D. M. (1983). Some alternative views of energy. Physics Education, 18(5), 213–217.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Wiser, M. (1986). The differentiation of heat and temperature: An evaluation of the effect of microcomputer teaching on students’ misconceptions (Technical Report). Cambridge, MA: Harvard Graduate School of Education.Google Scholar
  49. Wright, B. D., & Stone, M. H. (1999). Measurement essentials. Wilmington: Wide Range.Google Scholar
  50. Wright, B. D., & Stone, M. H. (2004). Making measures. Chicago: Phaneron Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.American Association for the Advancement of Science/Project 2061Washington, DCUSA

Personalised recommendations