Measuring quality of student experiences at a university using a Rasch model

Year: 2002

Author: Waugh, Russell

Type of paper: Refereed paper

The USA Community College Student Experiences Questionnaire, involving eight aspects of quality, was revised and re-written for a university in Australia. The eight quality aspects are: My Course, The Library, My Lecturers, Student Acquaintances, The Arts, The Sciences, Writing, and Vocations. Stem-items were created for each aspect and conceptually ordered-by-difficulty. Each of the stem-items was answered from two perspectives, Ideally, this is what I think should happen, and These are my experiences during this semester. The two response categories were Not at all, and Yes, on one or more occasions. The convenience sample was 363 students studying education at an Australian university and data were analysed with a Rasch measurement program (Simple Logistic Model). The difficulties of the items were calibrated and ordered from 'easy' to 'hard' on the same scale as the student measures of Quality. The final item sample was 52 (26 stem-items times 2). The proportion of observed student variance considered true was 0.81 and the proportion of item variance considered true was 0.92. The results supported most of the model behind the construct of Quality for the eight aspects in which the stem-items were ordered-by-difficulty and the difficulties of the items in the ideal perspective were easier than their corresponding difficulties in the experience perspective.