We previously reported how the opinions of second-year dentistry students and faculty members can be used to construct an assessment rubric to grade group-based concept maps in physiology (14). This article describes the second phase of this study of the subsequent year's cohort. A case study approach was used to investigate how groups of students used the criteria to complete their complex concept maps. Students' opinions about the assessment task and newly constructed rubric were sampled. Opinions across groups were correlated to academic achievements in the course. Two groups of four students volunteered to be videorecorded during a 4-h workshop, during which they completed their maps. The mapping task was not generally favored by students. However, those students who did favor the task achieved higher academic grades. Most students favored the newly constructed assessment rubric, commenting that it was easy to understand, fair, and appropriate, but reported that extra guidance from tutors and other resources were required. Coded videorecordings of the two observation groups revealed complex interactions around the three criteria of content, logic and understanding, and presentation. Two broad patterns of working were identified. One group distributed their efforts more evenly across the criteria, whereas the other group completed their maps by addressing the criteria in stages. These findings clearly indicate the academic challenges and social complexity in how students work in groups to complete complex concept maps in physiology.


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    Cooperative/small-group learning,NSDL,NSDL_SetSpec_BEN,Large-group instruction,Rubrics,Education,Life Science,oai:nsdl.org:2200/20090203234738382T,Assessment,Physiology,Assessment of learning



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