Date of Award

Spring 2010

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching & Learning


Curriculum and Instruction

Committee Director

Linda Bol

Committee Member

Jane Hager

Committee Member

Sueanne McKinney


The effect of individual or group guidelines on the calibration accuracy of high school biology students was investigated. The study was conducted with 102 International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program biology students in a public school setting. The study was carried out over three testing occasions. Students worked in group or individual settings with and without calibration guidelines. Four intact classes were randomly assigned to one of four conditions: groups calibrating without guidelines; groups calibrating with guidelines; individuals calibrating without guidelines; individuals calibrating with guidelines. The students participated in the calibration activities one block before they actually took each of the three tests. On the day of each test, immediately before taking the test, each student made predictions as to what they thought they would score on the test. Immediately after taking the test each student made postdictions on what they thought they scored on the test. Calibration accuracy was determined by calculating the difference between prediction and postdiction scores and the actual test score achieved. The results indicated that students who calibrated in groups showed trends of more accurate calibration predictions. Although one testing intervention showed significant results for postdiction accuracy, the other two testing interventions showed varied results. Students who calibrated in groups achieved higher scores on tests than did students who calibrated individually. In addition, guidelines were shown to be a significant factor in increasing achievement for students who calibrated individually. For students calibrating in groups guidelines had little impact. The results support the need for more research in metacognition and calibration techniques in order to improve student academic success.