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Abstract Title: Reworking exam problems to incentivize improved performance in upper-division electrodynamics
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation
Abstract: A previous study shows that incentivizing students to correct mistakes on unit exam problems within an upper-division quantum mechanics course improved students' problem-solving efforts on those same problems in a final exam environment, relative to a comparison group of students who were not incentivized. We attempt to replicate the quantitative portion of this study within a first-semester upper-division electromagnetism course, specifically examining students' invoking correct concepts and applying those concepts correctly. A statistical comparison of students who accepted the offer to rework unit exam problems for partial credit, versus students who declined the offer, demonstrates a better improvement for students who chose to rework relative to students who declined. As the results suggested that unit exam performance might provide a covariate within the comparison of choice to rework between groups, the results were analyzed using ANCOVA; they showed a result for one of the three featured exam problems that may be hidden by regular 1-way ANOVA analysis of pre-post normalized gains. The authors also investigate whether a focus on conceptual understanding versus a focus on algorithmic calculation for different exam problems affects the degree of benefit for students who rework problems. Results appear to show that incentivization works more specifically for invoking correct concepts on a primarily conceptual problem, and more specifically for applying concepts correctly on a primarily algorithmic problem. Future plans include a more complete analytical framework using think-aloud protocol interviews for students from the sample, as well as more statistical detail to determine the interaction between unit exam score and choice to rework problems.
Session Time: Virtual Poster Session
Poster Number: V-4
Contributed Paper Record: Contributed Paper Information
Contributed Paper Download: Download Contributed Paper

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Andrew J. Mason
University of Central Arkansas
Conway, AR 72035
and Co-Presenter(s)
John Colton, Brigham Young University - Provo

Contributed Poster

Contributed Poster: Download the Contributed Poster