12 Mar 2014

Alignment and Complexity Analysis of inorganic chemistry content - opportunity at the Dallas ACS Meeting

Submitted by Barbara Reisner, James Madison University

Kristen Murphy, Associate Director of the ACS Exams Institute, asked me to disseminate this information to the inorganic community. If you have some time on Sunday at the ACS meeting in Dallas, consider participating in these events.

 The ACS Exams Institute has been working on a method to add criterion referencing to our exams.  They have developed a content map feature that we will use to accomplish this.  The next step in the process is called "alignment", in which panels of experts look at items from exams and align them with the content map.  Concurrent to this, we have developed a rubric for assigning a complexity rating to exam items. We will investigate the objective complexity of inorganic chemistry exam items ultimately to integrate the complexity analysis into the alignment process.  We will be working on both of these tasks at the ACS Meeting in Indianapolis.  On behalf of Tom Holme and the Exams Institute, I would like to invite you to attend one or more of these sessions as your schedule allows.

The plans are to conduct the complexity analysis on Sunday morning (3/16), from 9 AM to noon in Dallas Belt #355 of the Hyatt Regency-Dallas and the alignment in the afternoon, from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM (also in Dallas Belt #355 of the Hyatt Regency-Dallas).  Although our room assignments have been more stable lately, there is always the possibility we may be in a different room with signage noting this change.

I am inviting you to consider joining us for either or both of these sessions if you are at the ACS meeting in Dallas.  Most of our volunteers find that working on an alignment process or complexity analysis gives them an interesting new perspective on how they look at the material in courses they teach.  The work itself is collaborative, so you also get to bounce ideas off of your colleagues as you do the alignment or analysis.

As is customary, participation in a half-day workshop allows us to reimburse all participants for a half-day per-diem at the DivCHED / Exams Institute rate, which amounts to a $100 per diem for helping with each workshop. We will also have coffee or beverages and light snacks at each session.