along the lines of: “If this doesn’t change my grade, why should I do this exam?” Perhaps the attitude that this was a trivial exercise pervaded those two sections and lowered their scores.
In light of this poor performance, the BIO 110 faculty will increase the time spent teaching the scientific method and will also place additional emphasis on use of the scientific method in lab activities. The faculty will not teach the test! However, the faculty wants to slightly increase the teaching time on this topic combined with new lab activities that stress the process of science.
The current faculty will examine also the scientific method exam. None of the current full-time BIO 110 faculty were employed when this exam was generated and the faculty in May 2005 will work on any refinements that they feel will improve this exam.
The faculty will also give the current exam at the end of spring term to a sample of BIO 110 students. Some students will receive the exam incorporated into the final exam of that instructor, while others will take it as a separate exercise. Comparisons can then be made between Fall and Spring and between a stand alone exam and the incorporated exam. These data may shed light on needed refinements in the exam or a different approach to giving the exam.
Update from Spring Semester efforts:
In light of the disappointing results from the Fall 2004 assessment, the Sciences Division decided to give the assessment to all Spring 2005 sections of BIO 110. Once again the results were disappointing. The goal might have been met if certain sections had been selected during the randomized process, but the sample of all sections yielded only 66 percent of the students reaching the goal of 70 percent correct answers. To meet the goal we need 70 percent to score at the 70 percent correct level or higher.
The biology will convene during the August work days to develop a complete action plan to try and have better results for Fall 2005.
The Science Goal was not met.