Validation of the Learning Progression-based Assessment of Modern Genetics in a College Context

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Building upon a methodologically diverse research foundation, we adapted and validated the Learning Progression-based Assessment of Modern Genetics (LPA-MG) for college students’ knowledge of the domain. Toward collecting valid learning progression-based measures in a college majors context, we redeveloped and content validated a majority of a previous version of the LPA-MG which was developed for high school students. Using a Rasch model calibrated on 316 students from 2 sections of majors introductory biology, we demonstrate the validity of this version and describe how college students’ ideas of modern genetics are likely to change as the students progress from low to high understanding. We then utilize these findings to build theory around the connections college students at different levels of understanding make within and across the many ideas within the domain.



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