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Cognition and Motivation in Educational Testing (COMET)


The Leibniz-Junior Research Group "COMET", headed by Dr. Marlit Annalena Lindner, investigates issues related to the digitization of test environments in the educational context. The focus is on design features of performance tests that become particularly attractive in the context of computer-based assessment. In particular, this includes direct, automatic performance feedback and the use of multimedia elements (e.g. combination of static/animated text/image combinations). In experimental studies in the laboratory and in schools, these test characteristics are systematically varied and their effects on students are investigated. The assumption is that different types of initial feedback and multimedia elements have a significant influence on the cognitive and metacognitive processing of the test items as well as students’ test-taking motivation and metacognition. Of particular interest are also interactions with the characteristics of test-takers. From a methodological standpoint, the project focuses on process-oriented analyses, which are, for example, based on psychophysiological parameters such as eye movements (eye tracking) or electroencephalography (EEG). The aim of this research is to provide empirical foundations for a better design of digital test instruments with test validity in mind. The project team cooperates with other Leibniz Institutes (IWM, Tübingen and DIPF, Frankfurt) as well as the University of Luxembourg and the Educational Testing Service (ETS) in the USA, Princeton.

In addition to the project leader, the team includes three doctoral students (Tom Ehrhart, Livia Kuklick, and Ute Mertens) as well as several student assistants. The project is financed by third-party funds of 969,000€ raised in the Leibniz Competition 2019 as well as additional in house funds at the IPN. The project will have a duration of five years (2019-2023).

Partnerships and associated schools: