Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Education
Natural Language Processing, Psychometrics, Statistical Modeling, Statistics, Survey Methodology
Relevant Projects:

National Science Foundation


American Chemical Society Committee on Chemistry Education Research

Ginger Shultz

Assistant Professor

Chemistry, LSA

The Shultz group uses data science methods in two primary ways 1) to investigate student placement in introductory chemistry courses and 2) to analyze student texts to provide instructors actionable intelligence about student learning. Using regression discontinuity we investigated the impact of taking general chemistry prior to organic chemistry on student performance and persistence in later chemistry courses and found that students who took general chemistry first benefitted by 1/4 of a letter grade but were no more likely to persist. A continued investigation using survey and interview methods indicated that this was related to academic skills rather than content preparation. Through the MWrite project we have collected a large corpus of student texts and are developing automated text analysis methods to glean information about student learning across disciplines, with specific focus on scientific reasoning.

Network representation of writing moves made by students in argumentative writing with relevant transition probabilities. The size of the node represents the relative frequency of operation use and the edge labels represent the transition probability with key transitions highlighted in orange.