Biology Diagnostic Tests
Extensive research on alternative conceptions in biology is beneficial in knowing where pedagogical problems exist, but often comes up short in terms of providing effective classroom tools to help students learn the scientific conceptions. Individual interviews are great for finding out what students understand, but are not practical for most teachers and/or researchers. Carefully constructed multiple-choice tests in which the distractors are based on alternative conception research have been constructed in several areas of biology. Dianne Anderson and Kathleen Fisher developed the Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS) in 2002. Click below to see a revised version (2004) here along with a key.
- Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS)
- Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS) Key
This test has been field tested with thousands of students in a variety of college biology classrooms, as well as some high school biology classrooms. Since it is a criterion-referenced, and not a norm-referenced test, it is best used as a formative, rather than a summative assessment. The individual questions also make excellent small group activities.
You are welcome to use the CINS, and we appreciate your feedback sent to email@example.com .