Variation is an important concept that underlies experimental design and data analysis. Incomplete understanding of variation can preclude students from designing experiments that adequately manage organismal and experimental variation, and from accurately conducting and interpreting statistical analyses of data. Because of the lack of assessment instruments that measure students’ ideas about variation in the context of biological investigations, we developed the Biological Variation in Experimental Design and Analysis (BioVEDA) assessment. Psychometric analyses indicate that BioVEDA assessment scores are reliable/precise. We provide evidence that the BioVEDA instrument can be used to evaluate students’ understanding of biological variation in the context of experimental design and analysis relative to other students and to their prior scores.
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© 2020 Hicks et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.