National Science Foundation to Evaluate Benefits of Automated Scoring for Science Assessments That Measure Complex Reasoning
Educational Testing Service's C-rater Scoring Engine focus of study.
- Tom Ewing
- Tom Ewing
Princeton, N.J. (October 26, 2011) —
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley and Educational Testing Service (ETS), have received a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to conduct a study evaluating how science assessments that measure complex reasoning may benefit from automated scoring capabilities, including ETS's innovative c-rater TM engine.
The NSF recently awarded funding to the university for a five-year project, CLASS: Continuous Learning and Automated Scoring in Science, through the Discovery Research K-12 grant program. Taking part in the project in addition to the university and ETS are science teachers from five middle schools that serve more than 4,000 students. The project incorporates automated scoring with five types of science items to investigate the impact of various types of feedback on student science learning.
All the curriculum and assessment activities will take place on the Web-based Inquiry Science Environment (WISE) program, which is supported by NSF. Through the WISE modules, students design, debate, and critique solutions to scientific topics, such as global climate change, mitosis, and population genetics. For the project, the ETS team led by Research Scientist Lydia Liu will incorporate the c-rater automated scoring engine in testing constructed-response test questions and integrating results for real-time scoring in the WISE system.
"Our overall goal is to investigate how we can incorporate automated scoring into science units to improve learning," says Marcia Linn, the project lead and a professor of Cognition and Development in the Graduate School of Education at University of California, Berkeley. "We are interested in using c-rater scores to design automated guidance."
"ETS has worked closely with Professor Linn on two existing NSF grants on science assessment," Liu says. "When she first discussed the project with me, I saw it as a terrific opportunity to expand some of our automated scoring capabilities to a new field."
Linn says that the CLASS project aims to take full advantage of technology, such as ETS's c-rater engine, to efficiently measure student knowledge and to help teachers assess and instruct their students with timely and effective feedback.
At ETS, we advance quality and equity in education for people worldwide by creating assessments based on rigorous research. ETS serves individuals, educational institutions and government agencies by providing customized solutions for teacher certification, English language learning, and elementary, secondary and post-secondary education, as well as conducting education research, analysis and policy studies. Founded as a nonprofit in 1947, ETS develops, administers and scores more than 50 million tests annually — including the TOEFL® and TOEIC® tests, the GRE® tests and The Praxis Series™ assessments — in more than 180 countries, at over 9,000 locations worldwide. www.ets.org