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Multiple-choice Assessment for Upper-division Electricity and Magnetism Documents

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Multiple-choice Assessment for Upper-division Electricity and Magnetism 

written by Bethany R. Wilcox and Steven J. Pollock

The Colorado Upper-division Electrostatics (CUE) diagnostic was designed as an open-ended assessment in order to capture elements of student reasoning in upper-division electrostatics. The diagnostic has been given for many semesters at several universities resulting in an extensive database of CUE responses. To increase the utility and scalability of the assessment, we used this database along with research on students' difficulties to create a multiple-choice version. The new version explores the viability of a novel test format where students select multiple responses and can receive partial credit based on the accuracy and consistency of their selections. This format was selected with the goal of preserving insights afforded by the open-ended format while exploiting the logistical advantages of a multiple-choice assessment. Here, we present examples of the questions and scoring of the multiple-choice CUE as well as initial analysis of the test's validity, item difficulty, discrimination, and overall consistency with the open-ended version.

Published February 1, 2014
Last Modified January 31, 2014

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