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Identifying misconceptions in student learning is a valuable practice for evaluating student learning gains and directing educational interventions. By accurately identifying students’ knowledge and misconceptions about microbiology concepts, instructors can design effective classroom practices centered on student understanding. Following the development of ASM’s Curriculum Guidelines in 2012, we developed a concept inventory, the Microbiology for Health Sciences Concept Inventory (MHSCI), that measures learning gains and identifies student misconceptions in health sciences microbiology classrooms. The 23-question MHSCI was delivered to a wide variety of students at multiple institution types. Psychometric analysis identified that the MHSCI instrument is both discriminatory and reliable in measuring student learning gains. The MHSCI results correlated with course outcomes, showing the value of using the instrument alongside course level assessments to measure student learning. The MHSCI is a reliable and efficient way to measure student learning in microbiology and can be used both as a faculty development tool and an effective student assessment tool.


This article was originally published in the Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education, available at DOI: 10.1128/jmbe.v18i3.1322.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license.



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