More than a matter of time: Assessment Accommodation for Spatial Ability Using Static and Dynamic Images

Background: In the era of computer-based assessments and the use of dynamic images to enhance learning we need to be cautious of the accommodations we provide learners who require assistance. Educators and accommodation officials often use additional time to assist students, but this might not be effective. The present study examines the differences in testing times amongst high and low spatial ability learners using static and dynamic images for testing purposes to explore the relationship of testing time and test score. Methods: Twenty-nine participates volunteered to participate in this study. Correlation, independent group t-tests, and analysis of covariance were used to examine differences in time required to complete the learning tasks by high and low spatial ability learners. Performance scores amongst the groups were also analyzed. Results: Spatial ability was not statistically associated to a learner’s completion time during two visual learning tasks (F(1, 26)=1.286, p≥0.05). While , spatial ability did not have a significant effect on performance during a static visual learning task, statistically significant differences were observed in the dynamic task (t(27)=3.342, p≤0.01). Overall, learners with high spatial ability had higher overall performance scores (M=71.98, SD=22.46) on dynamic visual learning tasks, when compared to low spatial ability learners (M=47.57, SD=16.10). Approximately, 31.7% of the total variability in performance during the dynamic task can be accounted for by spatial ability (F(1, 27)=12.045, p≤0.01). Conclusion: Granting additional time on visual tasks using dynamic images does not help learners with lower spatial ability. Accommodations using images for assessment should be given through the use of alternative perspectives.
Computer-based Assessments, Dynamic Images, Learner Accommodations, Learning Technology, Online Learning, Spatial Ability
Loftus, J., Wilson, T., Barber, C., and Jacobsen, M. (2019). More than a matter of time: Assessment Accommodation for Spatial Ability Using Static and Dynamic Images. American Educational Research Association (AERA), Toronto, ON, April 5 - 9, 2019.