June 15, 2019
June 15, 2019
October 19, 2019
Educational Research and Methods
This evidence-based practices paper discusses the method employed in validating the use of a project modified version of the PROCESS tool (Grigg, Van Dyken, Benson, & Morkos, 2013) for measuring student problem solving skills. The PROCESS tool allows raters to score students’ ability in the domains of Problem definition, Representing the problem, Organizing information, Calculations, Evaluating the solution, Solution communication, and Self-assessment. Specifically, this research compares student performance on solving traditional textbook problems with novel, student-generated learning activities (i.e. reverse engineering videos in order to then create their own homework problem and solution). The use of student-generated learning activities to assess student problem solving skills has theoretical underpinning in Felder’s (1987) work of “creating creative engineers,” as well as the need to develop students’ abilities to transfer learning and solve problems in a variety of real world settings. In this study, four raters used the PROCESS tool to score the performance of 70 students randomly selected from two undergraduate chemical engineering cohorts at two Midwest universities. Students from both cohorts solved 12 traditional textbook style problems and students from the second cohort solved an additional nine student-generated video problems.
Any large scale assessment where multiple raters use a rating tool requires the investigation of several aspects of validity. The many-facets Rasch measurement model (MFRM; Linacre, 1989) has the psychometric properties to determine if there are any characteristics other than “student problem solving skills” that influence the scores assigned, such as rater bias, problem difficulty, or student demographics. Before implementing the full rating plan, MFRM was used to examine how raters interacted with the six items on the modified PROCESS tool to score a random selection of 20 students’ performance in solving one problem. An external evaluator led “inter-rater reliability” meetings where raters deliberated rationale for their ratings and differences were resolved by recourse to Pretz, et al.’s (2003) problem-solving cycle that informed the development of the PROCESS tool. To test the new understandings of the PROCESS tool, raters were assigned to score one new problem from a different randomly selected group of six students. Those results were then analyzed in the same manner as before. This iterative process resulted in substantial increases in reliability, which can be attributed to increased confidence that raters were operating with common definitions of the items on the PROCESS tool and rating with consistent and comparable severity. This presentation will include examples of the student-generated problems and a discussion of common discrepancies and solutions to the raters’ initial use of the PROCESS tool. Findings as well as the adapted PROCESS tool used in this study can be useful to engineering educators and engineering education researchers.
Duckett, T. R., & Liberatore, M. W., & Asogwa, U., & Mentzer, G. A., & Malefyt, A. P. (2019, June), Assessing the Reliability of a Chemical Engineering Problem-solving Rubric when Using Multiple Raters Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32124
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