July 26, 2021
July 26, 2021
July 19, 2022
New Engineering Educators
One of the primary goals of a pre-test and post-test analysis is to obtain a comparative measure of growth in student knowledge on a subject matter at the end of a semester or after some number of weeks of course instruction. The pre-test is a background probe while the post-test is an assessment of the knowledge gained over the course of instruction as the results of the post-test are juxtaposed to that of the pre-test. Studies have shown that there is significant growth in knowledge gained based on pre-test and post-test performance. However, what happens to this knowledge when students have completed the final examination for the semester and perceive that they are not going to be tested on the course material in subsequent semesters? Do these students consciously or unconsciously forget the material?
This paper investigates students’ retention of material from a surveying course during and after the semester of instruction over several years. This investigation utilizes the following scenarios; Pre-tests on the first day of class during the fall semester of sophomore year; Post-tests on the last day of class during the fall semester of sophomore year; Post-tests on the day of exams during the fall semester of sophomore year; Post-tests at the start of the spring semester of sophomore year and a post-test in the junior year and another in the senior year.
In this research, the question format (multiple choice vs short answer vs numeric) and the specific surveying topics are analyzed to investigate their influence on students’ performance across years. To add to this, students’ performance on questions that cover concepts reinforced in surveying labs are compared with more theoretical questions to investigate the hypothesis that surveying labs positively influence student retention of surveying course material.
Preliminary test results show the following percent increases in post-test scores when compared to pre-test scores: Over 75% increase for post-tests on the last day of class during the fall semester of sophomore year; Over 100% increase for post-tests on the day of exams during the fall semester of sophomore year and; Over 60% increase for post-tests at the start of the spring of sophomore year and an average of 55% increase over the junior and senior year. These results highlight that, students made measurable gains in acquired knowledge for the surveying course and that retention of material past their semester of instruction is significantly high.
Brown, K., & Michalaka, D., & Shetty, N. H., & Davis, W. J. (2021, July), Investigating Student Retention of Surveying Course Material from Sophomore Year to Senior Year Using Pre- and Post-Tests Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37399
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