Interactive computer assessment and analysis of students’ ability in scientific modeling

Authors: Jing Lin*Letong Zhang, Wenting Wei, Ping-Han Cheng, Chun-Yen Chang

Abstract: Scientific modeling (SM) is a core scientific practice and critical for students’ scientific literacy. Previous research has not used interactive computer assessment to investigate students’ SM ability. This study aimed to explore an effective way in human-computer interaction to reveal the challenges faced by students in the four-element process of constructing, using, evaluating, and revising models. Contextualized in the solar system, eleven interactive tasks assessed 419 students in grades 4, 7, and 10. Results indicated that “model evaluation” and “model revision” were more difficult for students than “model construction” and “model use.” Grade significantly predicted students’ SM ability (p<.001). The interaction with re-answer according to feedback promoted students’ in-depth reflection and performance in SM. Findings of the study may provide a basis for improving students’ SM ability.

Keywords: interactive computer assessment, scientific modeling, interactive task

Publication: Eurasia Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education download pdf