Potential Project Description for 2009-10


Title: Placement Exam Data Analysis
Faculty: Mary M. Walczak, Evaluation and Assessment, and Kay Smith, MSCS

Several St. Olaf departments use placement exams to help determine which St. Olaf course is the right course for an incoming student. In chemistry and mathematics, we have evidence that these exams are good predictors, that is, the students following the recommendations are successful in their St. Olaf chemistry courses. We wonder whether the exams themselves can be streamlined to take less student time. Are certain questions predictors of success in courses? Are other questions on the exams necessary? This project involves correlating responses on individual questions to class performance and may be applicable to several on-campus departments.