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2. Methods and Findings

Table of contents
  1. 1. Methods
  2. 2. Findings 

Please note this page is a work in progress! 


Tool development

I plan on giving students a pre- and post-instructional assessment.  I will refine a previously used assessment tool, adding new methods to tease out student misconceptions.  One addition I would like to make is a small concept map.  Students will have experience with concept maps from units covered earlier in the semester.  They will be given the terms, "DNA, Genes, Nucleotides, Chromosomes, and Genome" and asked to relate those terms, coming up with their own connections and prepositions.

Another tool I hope to use comes from Rotbain, et al. (2005), where they used a drawing-based activity to assess learning.  Students will be provided with a drawing of DNA structure and be asked to label the parts.  I like this addition because it gives students a visual base to work off of.  I hope this technique will reveal which students have the misconception that genes or chromosomes are the rungs on the DNA ladder.

I am interested in the sources of misconceptions.  After each content question, I will ask students "What were you thinking of when you answered the previous question?  It could be a picture, a TV show, something someone said or something you saw on the Internet, etc."  In the pretest, this question will hopefully reveal the sources of misconceptions.  In the posttest, this question will reveal teaching strategies that either formed new misconceptions, or helped cure old ones.  I have to thank my "critical friend", Carol, for this idea!


I plan on giving all students a written pre- and post-instructional assessment as part of their coursework (assessment tools for Fall, 2008 are attached below).  The pre-instructional assessment will be administered a week or two before the information is covered in class.  The post-instructional assessment will be administered two weeks after their unit test over the material.



I have no findings at this time, however if you would like to see the results of our pilot study, please go to Previous Research.

Files 2

FileSizeDateAttached by 
Molecular Genetics Posttest
93.35 kB17:16, 17 Nov 2008bstoneActions
Molecular Genetics Pretest
91.07 kB17:16, 17 Nov 2008bstoneActions
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