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Analysis of learning at an Advanced Placement descriptive chemistry web site

Kent James Crippen, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


A Web site dedicated to the descriptive portion of the Advanced Placement chemistry examination was provided for high school students. This Web site provided repeatable testing with feedback in the form of quizzes produced and graded in less than one second. The AP descriptive chemistry Web site was designed in a manner consistent with the literature on repetitive testing and feedback. ^ In this study, everything a user did while using the AP descriptive chemistry Web site was recorded. Use patterns were compiled and learning analyzed. A post AP examination survey instrument was used to elucidate user perceptions about the effectiveness of the Web site. Congruence was determined between the user's perceptions of effectiveness, the user's use record, and the literature. ^ The use patterns for AP students suggest that the AP descriptive Web site is an effective tool for students to learn descriptive chemistry. ^ Learning was documented through a linear improvement of quiz scores and average score per item both over the range of quizzes attempted and over the life of the study. A linear relationship with a high correlation is demonstrated for the average score per quiz item attempted throughout the range of quizzes for all AP students. ^ The use patterns for the AP teachers do not clearly support this Web site as an effective tool to teach all teachers descriptive chemistry. The teachers may have had differing individual goals and motivations for using the site. ^ Results of the post AP chemistry examination e-mail survey support the effectiveness of the descriptive AP chemistry Web site as a tool to learn descriptive chemistry from the user's perspective. While the degree of support for effectiveness of site is not uniform throughout the user classifications, the users do agree on the types of things that limited the effectiveness of the Web site. Consistent with the literature, the users who made extensive use of the testing and feedback components learned descriptive chemistry and generally felt that the site was effective. ^

Subject Area

Education, Tests and Measurements|Chemistry, General|Education, Secondary|Education, Technology of

Recommended Citation

Crippen, Kent James, "Analysis of learning at an Advanced Placement descriptive chemistry web site" (2000). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI9991984.