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Validation of an Instrument to Measure Student Engagement with a Standards-Based Grading System

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

October 19, 2019

Conference Session

ERM Technical Session 5: Assessment

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

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Paper Authors


Heidi A. Diefes-Dux University of Nebraska, Lincoln Orcid 16x16

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Heidi A. Diefes-Dux is a Professor in Biological Systems Engineering at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln. She received her B.S. and M.S. in Food Science from Cornell University and her Ph.D. in Food Process Engineering from the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering at Purdue University. She was an inaugural faculty member of the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University. Her research focuses on the development, implementation, and assessment of modeling and design activities with authentic engineering contexts. She also focuses on the implementation of learning objective-based grading and teaching assistant training.

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Laura Melissa Cruz Castro Purdue University, West Lafayette

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Laura Cruz is native to Bogot√°, Colombia, where she obtained her Bachelor degree in statistics from Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Her passion has been always education. Laura Cruz is currently an Engineering Education Ph.D. student at Purdue University in West Lafayette, where she is working in Education Assessment, specifically in high-quality assessment practice in engineering education.

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This research paper presents the development and validation of an instrument intended to measure the engagement of students with a standards-based grading (SBG) system. A 26-item instrument was developed with a theoretical structure meant to examine three aspects of student engagement with an SBG system: their use of stated learning objectives (LOs) (9 items), their timely access to feedback (7 items), and their use of feedback to guide subsequent learning (10 items). The instrument was administered in a large first-year engineering course at a Midwestern university that used a well-developed SBG system. Following cleaning and imputation procedures, an Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) and a Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) of student responses was done to examine internal validity. Additionally, the Cronbach alpha was computed for the complete instrument and for each subscale. The results of this analysis indicated seven subscales with the retention of 21 items and a general Cronbach alpha of 0.94. Each subscale in the Engagement with SBG System Questionnaire had three items, each with a Cronbach alpha coefficients greater than 0.8. The seven subscales accounted for 67.7% of the total variance. Two subscales showed significant difference when an intervention known to improve students' timely review of feedback was implemented. A demonstration of the use of the instrument is provided.

Diefes-Dux, H. A., & Cruz Castro, L. M. (2019, June), Validation of an Instrument to Measure Student Engagement with a Standards-Based Grading System Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--33530

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