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Physics Colloquium Series: Dr. Rebecca Lindell
(Physics Lecture Series) Tiliadal STEM Education Solutions
“Investigating the Structure of College Students’ understanding of Lunar Phases”
With the development of Module Analysis of Multiple Choice Responses (MAMCR) methodology by Brewe, Bruun and Bearden researchers can now use network analysis to uncover the underlying conceptual modules of student performance on multiple-choice assessments. These conceptual modules can lead researchers to a deeper understanding of how students’ structure knowledge. In this study we utilized MAMCR to analyze pre-test results from the Lunar Phases Concept Inventory (LPCI). The LPCI assesses students understanding of lunar phases across eight separate dimensions of understanding based on the results of a detailed qualitative phenomenography of college students’ understanding of lunar phases. Unlike many concept inventories, the LPCI has multiple items for each dimension of understanding and each response corresponds to either the scientifically correct answer or to an alternative idea uncovered from the qualitative investigation. In this talk, the different conceptual modules of lunar phases uncovered using MAMCR as well as what these results tell us about how college students structure their knowledge of lunar phases.