This study engaged in a curricular redesign of an undergraduate biochemistry course undertaken by a collaborative action research group. The initial portion of this study investigated student conceptual understanding of foundational concepts via a rigorously tested concept inventory. the impact of the redesign on the student foundational conceptual understanding was determined by comparison with a baseline data set. Findings suggest that students enter and exit the biochemistry course with little understanding of key foundational concepts. Examination of student performance after the incorporation of creative exercises showed a significant impact of the curricular changes on two of the concepts of interest. In addition to the quantitative investigation, this study explored the experiences of the faculty as they participated in the action research on undergraduate biochemistry education. Through the faculty interviews, descriptions of their experiences and reflections on the project's quantitative data provided a deeper understanding of the action based curricular design. The final portion of this study included a qualitative analysis investigated the approaches students take while working through the creative exercises via think-aloud interviews. The think-aloud interview format was also employed to explore the students' interpretations of the quantitative instrument. This portion of the study revealed a misalignment between the student interpretation of the quantitative instrument and its structure. The findings from the creative exercise interviews were used to propose a model of student approaches to solving the activity which reveals both critical and promising features such as a prevailing concern of faculty expectations and contemplating the quality of responses.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)
Nix, Christopher, "Following Faculty Engaging in Collaborative Action Research to Approach Curricular Change in Undergraduate Biochemistry" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 1625.
Restricted to the UCF community until May 2024; it will then be open access.