Sydney Inthof presented a progress report of the research she is conducting with me in her CHEM 445 Research Learning Experience course. Her main goal for this year is to gather content validity evidence regarding our acid-base concept test which has been in development since Jessie Zhang worked on the project during the 2016-2017 academic year. Jessie conducted several student interviews, which identified alternate ways of thinking in our second-year non-majors students. Now, the inventory questions are being examined by organic chemistry experts, mostly faculty members, who are rating the importance and relevance to chemistry majors and non-majors, indicating the year in which the content is covered, and estimating the difficulty for students. Experts are also providing very useful feedback on question wording and the chemistry content covered. We have one item with quite a bit of expert disagreement, so we will replace it. This project is a challenge for us because we want to tap into students’ conceptual understanding using some unfamiliar chemistry, so they cannot answer based on memorization. However, we need the chemistry to be unambiguous and of course, correct!
Jackie will be presenting this work at the upcoming ACS Spring meeting, and Sydney has submitted an application to present at the Western States Chemistry Education Group meeting.
Papers we found particularly helpful in designing our content validation research are:
Crocker, L. (2015). Content Validity. International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences (Second Edition). Pages 774-777
Davis, L. L. (1992). Instrument review: Getting the most from a panel of experts. Applied Nursing Research, 5(4), 194-197.