The project uses a comparative research design and will generate evidence that is descriptive [design research] and associative/correlational [quasi-experimental]. Original data will be collected on high school students using assessments of learning, observation [personal observation and videography], and survey research [semi-structured or informal interviews and face-to-face].
The study compares two learning progressions in genetics. Two sets of instructional materials will be developed. We will be using the Evidence-Centered-Design framework to develop assessment items targeted at the common constructs on both learning progressions. Items will be of multiple forms including forced choice, ordered multiple choice, and short answer. Interview protocols will also be developed using similar assessment tasks. We will be using IRT models to establish item difficulties and student ability levels in the two conditions.