Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Mining Data From Last Semester’s Exams

Recently (Jan. 17), at the Best Practices for Legal Education Blog, Barbara Glesner Fines (UMKC) offered helpful advice about how to get some value out of last semester’s exams. She suggests mining them for data and using the data to improve your teaching:

1. Improve your data collection. Examine the distribution of performance on individual questions or issues (a few issues, not all of them).

2. Analyze your data. Look for patterns to determine why students did well or poorly on an issue.

3. Plan for the next class. Next time, plan how to do a better job teaching these issues. During the semester, include some student assessments (e.g., quizzes) to help identify learning deficiencies.

Professor Glesner Fines illustrates this process by showing how she mined and used data from her Professional Responsibility exam.

Of course, you can use the same method to mine data from Legal Writing papers and clinical experiences. Worth reading.



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