Carrie Gates | November 4, 2019
Student engagement has long been recognized as key to academic success. Most research, however, has focused on engagement generally, across the school setting.
Quantitative psychologist Ying “Alison” Cheng is working to better understand the link between student engagement and learning outcomes in a specific course — and how adaptive testing can help.
With funding from a 2014 Early Career Development Award from the National Science Foundation, Cheng has now developed a computerized adaptive testing system for high school students taking advanced placement (AP) statistics and is exploring the relationship between feedback and engagement.
“Research has shown that providing feedback is crucial to improving skill acquisition, especially when instruction is done in a computer-based fashion,” she said. “As more and more online resources are being offered, this could have a big impact down the road.”
The project, which will be completed in summer 2020, has already shown promising results and has led Cheng to develop a similar assessment program for non-AP statistics students, with the support of $1.4 million in funding from the Institute of Education Sciences.
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