First Advisor

William Becker

Date of Publication

Winter 1-17-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Teaching (M.S.T.) in General Science


Science Teaching




Chemistry -- Study and teaching (Secondary) -- Evaluation, Communication in education -- Study and teaching (Secondary) -- Case studies, Interaction analysis in education -- Study and teaching (Secondary) -- Case studies, Critical thinking in adolescence -- Case studies



Physical Description

1 online resource (v, 151 pages)


This study investigated the use of formative assessment to improve three specific data analysis skills within the context of a high school chemistry class: graph interpretation, pattern recognition, and making conclusions based on data. Students need to be able to collect data, analyze that data, and produce accurate scientific explanations (NRC, 2011) if they want to be ready for college and careers after high school. This mixed methods study, performed in a high school chemistry classroom, investigated the impact of the formative assessment process on data analysis skills that require higher order thinking. We hypothesized that the use of evaluative feedback within the formative assessment process would improve specific data analysis skills. The evaluative feedback was given to the one group and withheld from the other for the first part of the study. The treatment group had statistically better data analysis skills after evaluative feedback over the control. While these results are promising, they must be considered preliminary due to a number of limitations involved in this study.


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