Science Inquiry Skill Analyzer and Activity Portal
Design and Development of Pathways to Inquiry A three year proof-of-concept project supported by NSF Yiping Lou, Pamela Blanchard, Jaime Carnaggio & Srividya Singampalli Louisiana State University MERLOT, August 7-10, 2007 New Orleans, Louisiana Project Purpose Design and development of an Inquiry Skill
Analyzer (iSA) To assist teachers in analyzing their own science inquiry skills as well as those of their students Design and development of an Inquiry Activities Portal (iAP) To assist teachers in identifying and
selecting technology-supported earth science activities to develop science inquiry skills through the development of Inquiry Abilities in NSES 1. 2. 3. 4. Identify questions that can be answered through
scientific investigations. Design and conduct a scientific investigation. Use appropriate tools and techniques to gather, analyze, and interpret data. Develop descriptions, explanations, predictions and models using evidence. 5. 6.
7. 8. Think critically and logically to make the relationships between evidence and explanations. Recognize and analyze alternative explanations and predictions. Communicate scientific procedures and explanations.
Use mathematics in all aspect of scientific inquiry. Inquiry Skill Analyzer A web-based assessment application and can also be downloaded and administered through PDA. Teachers can use it to: Identify their areas of strengths and weaknesses in science inquiry skills
Monitor progress in inquiry skills Evaluate the effects of the chosen activities to guide their future efforts Inquiry Activity Portal A database of identified earth science activities based on the inquiry practiced in the activity. Target specific science inquiry skills in the context of earth science Provide teachers with a platform to share their experiences and evidence of student results from using the resources
Build a community of practice in teaching inquiry science Project Staff and Collaborators PI: Dr. Yiping Lou (Educational Technology)
Co-PI: Dr. Pamela Blanchard (Geology and Science Methods) Middle school science teacher collaborators A team of programmers at LSU Information Technology Services Educational Technology and Computer Science graduate students Year One Project Activities 1. 2. 3.
Develop earth science inquiry skill assessment items Design and develop PTI web application Select and develop technologysupported earth science inquiry activities Assessment Items Development Methods
Mapping and classification of inquiry skills based on the National Science Education Standards (NRC, 1996) Developing inquiry skill test development specifications Assessment item development Expert panel review of all items using a checklist and through discussion Pilot testing and item analyses
Inquiry Skills Wheel Item Review Checklist Results of Item Development Number of items developed in year 1: about 100 Panel review agreement rate: Inquiry skill matching: 82%
Appropriate earth science content and categorization of basic and advance content: 75% Results of Item Development Item analyses Difficulty level: 0.24-0.77 with the majority at around 0.50-0.60
Discrimination validity: pbs = 0.11 to 0.47 5 items below 0.20, which were later revised Inquiry Activity Research and Development Process Research earth science inquiry activities (Sources include: Digital Library of Earth System Education,
Nasa websites, and other NSF science inquiry projects such as WISE and Keystone) Develop a Learning Cycle activity overlay Activity review Develop a classroom observation protocol Classroom observation and evaluation Activity Overlay Activities Selected and Classified
Activity Observation Protocol Web Application Design and Development Process Review commercial assessment
applications (e.g., Questionmark Perception, Exam View) Develop design specifications Application development using ASP Inbuilt Membership technology for User Management, User Session management, Cookie Management, etc. Code testing and walk through Ongoing formative evaluation and enhancement PTI Home Future Work
Year 2 (2007-8) Piloting with four 8th grade earth science teachers and their students Further development of both the Analyzer application and the Activities Portal Year 3 (2008-9) Field testing with 16 teachers, data analysis, and reporting
Significance It is expected that the use of iSA and iAP will significantly increase the number of inquiry activities used in the classroom Improving teachers pedagogical skills in teaching science as inquiry Improving middle grade students understanding of and skills in science inquiry.
The prototype can be replicated to other grade levels and subject areas. The positive results from this project can provide a model for building and using cumulative knowledge with collaborative efforts from teacher educators, researchers, educational technology designers, and classroom teachers.
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