Evaluating students' correlation graphing capability using SOLO taxonomy

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Conference Proceeding

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Scatterplots, Regression modelling, Levels of achievement


Many students often fail to accomplish correlation graphing tasks beyond scatterplot construction. This hinders students’ capability of performing subsequent regression modelling tasks. Hence, a qualitative analysis of students’ correlation graphing capability should be performed in order to identify which parts of correlation graphing they cannot fully grasp so as to be reinforced. To perform the analysis, an assessment instrument, the SOLO taxonomy of correlation graphing capability was derived from the SOLO taxonomy of Biggs and Collis (1982) consisting of five levels of achievement: Prestructural, Unistructural, Multistructural, Relational and Extended Abstract. A random sample of twenty-three students studying in tertiary level was drawn to attempt seven questions on an individual basis in a test that was conducted in a computing laboratory. Questions 1-2, 3-5 and 6-7 were used to evaluate how much students understand the given data regarding relations between variables, statistical relations between variables and functional relations between variables respectively. After the SOLO analysis has been performed, the findings reveal information about which tasks students cannot accomplish and why they cannot accomplish. These findings therefore should be able to inform teachers especially novices to think how to structure the teaching and learning activities and enhance students’ understanding of specific areas in correlation graphing they cannot fully grasp.

Source Publication

The 59th ISI World Statistics Congress, 2013 Aug 25-30, Hong Kong

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