Development of a research ethics knowledge and analytical skills assessment tool

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Introduction: The goal of this project was to develop and validate a new tool to evaluate learners' knowledge and skills related to research ethics. Methods: A core set of 50 questions from existing computer-based online teaching modules were identified, refined and supplemented to create a set of 74 multiple-choice, true/false and short answer questions. The questions were pilot-tested and item discrimination was calculated for each question. Poorly performing items were eliminated or refined. Two comparable assessment tools were created. These assessment tools were administered as a pre-test and post-test to a cohort of 58 Indian junior health research investigators before and after exposure to a new course on research ethics. Half of the investigators were exposed to the course online, the other half in person. Item discrimination was calculated for each question and Cronbach's a for each assessment tool. A final version of the assessment tool that incorporated the best questions from the pre-/post-test phase was used to assess retention of research ethics knowledge and skills 3 months after course delivery. Results: The final version of the REKASA includes 41 items and had a Cronbach's a of 0.837. Conclusion: The results illustrate, in one sample of learners, the successful, systematic development and use of a knowledge and skills assessment tool in research ethics capable of not only measuring basic knowledge in research ethics and oversight but also assessing learners' ability to apply ethics knowledge to the analytical task of reasoning through research ethics cases, without reliance on essay or discussion-based examination. These promising preliminary findings should be confirmed with additional groups of learners.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)236-242
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Medical Ethics
Volume38
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2012

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Research Ethics
research ethics
discrimination
Research Personnel
Ethics
Assessment Tools
Teaching
moral philosophy
examination
human being
Health
ability
health
Research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Health(social science)
  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

Cite this

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title = "Development of a research ethics knowledge and analytical skills assessment tool",
abstract = "Introduction: The goal of this project was to develop and validate a new tool to evaluate learners' knowledge and skills related to research ethics. Methods: A core set of 50 questions from existing computer-based online teaching modules were identified, refined and supplemented to create a set of 74 multiple-choice, true/false and short answer questions. The questions were pilot-tested and item discrimination was calculated for each question. Poorly performing items were eliminated or refined. Two comparable assessment tools were created. These assessment tools were administered as a pre-test and post-test to a cohort of 58 Indian junior health research investigators before and after exposure to a new course on research ethics. Half of the investigators were exposed to the course online, the other half in person. Item discrimination was calculated for each question and Cronbach's a for each assessment tool. A final version of the assessment tool that incorporated the best questions from the pre-/post-test phase was used to assess retention of research ethics knowledge and skills 3 months after course delivery. Results: The final version of the REKASA includes 41 items and had a Cronbach's a of 0.837. Conclusion: The results illustrate, in one sample of learners, the successful, systematic development and use of a knowledge and skills assessment tool in research ethics capable of not only measuring basic knowledge in research ethics and oversight but also assessing learners' ability to apply ethics knowledge to the analytical task of reasoning through research ethics cases, without reliance on essay or discussion-based examination. These promising preliminary findings should be confirmed with additional groups of learners.",
author = "Holly Taylor and Kass, {Nancy E} and Joseph Ali and Sisson, {Stephen D} and Amanda Bertram and Anant Bhan",
year = "2012",
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doi = "10.1136/medethics-2011-100025",
language = "English (US)",
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AU - Bhan, Anant

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AB - Introduction: The goal of this project was to develop and validate a new tool to evaluate learners' knowledge and skills related to research ethics. Methods: A core set of 50 questions from existing computer-based online teaching modules were identified, refined and supplemented to create a set of 74 multiple-choice, true/false and short answer questions. The questions were pilot-tested and item discrimination was calculated for each question. Poorly performing items were eliminated or refined. Two comparable assessment tools were created. These assessment tools were administered as a pre-test and post-test to a cohort of 58 Indian junior health research investigators before and after exposure to a new course on research ethics. Half of the investigators were exposed to the course online, the other half in person. Item discrimination was calculated for each question and Cronbach's a for each assessment tool. A final version of the assessment tool that incorporated the best questions from the pre-/post-test phase was used to assess retention of research ethics knowledge and skills 3 months after course delivery. Results: The final version of the REKASA includes 41 items and had a Cronbach's a of 0.837. Conclusion: The results illustrate, in one sample of learners, the successful, systematic development and use of a knowledge and skills assessment tool in research ethics capable of not only measuring basic knowledge in research ethics and oversight but also assessing learners' ability to apply ethics knowledge to the analytical task of reasoning through research ethics cases, without reliance on essay or discussion-based examination. These promising preliminary findings should be confirmed with additional groups of learners.

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