Measuring Communication Skills: The STEM Interpersonal Communication Skills Assessment Battery

TitleMeasuring Communication Skills: The STEM Interpersonal Communication Skills Assessment Battery
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsWilkins, KG, Bernstein, BL, Bekki, JM
JournalJournal of Engineering Education
Date Published2015
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number10694730
KeywordsCOMMUNICATIVE , ENGINEERING , Female , Graduate , instrument , INTERPERSONAL , research , STEM
Abstract Effective interpersonal communication skills in the advisor-advisee relationship context are important to the success of graduate students. Few instruments have previously been developed to assess students' communication skills in this context. Purpose/Hypothesis This study reports the development and validation of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Interpersonal Communication Skills Assessment Battery (STEM ICSAB) for women doctoral students in engineering, mathematics, computer sciences, and the physical sciences. The STEM ICSAB consists of three instruments: the Interpersonal Communication Knowledge Assessment, Interpersonal Communication Coping Self-Efficacy Assessment, and the Interpersonal Communication Skills Assessment. Design/Method The STEM ICSAB was developed in three stages. Stage I consisted of item generation and establishment of content validity. In Stage II, an exploratory analysis with a convenience sample of undergraduate and graduate students determined the initial factor structure of each instrument. In Stage III, a confirmatory factor analysis with a sample of women doctoral students further examined the factor structures derived from Stage II. The Knowledge assessment has 20 items, the Coping Self-Efficacy assessment has 12 items, and the Skills assessment has five items. All three measures fit a unidimensional factor structure and demonstrate moderate to high internal consistency. Conclusion This study provides initial support for the psychometric properties of the STEM ICSAB. Use of the STEM ICSAB will improve opportunities for women doctoral students to learn, practice, and improve critical interpersonal communication skills. 
NotesWilkins, Kerrie G. 1 Bernstein, Bianca L. 1 Bekki, Jennifer M. 1; Affiliation: 1: Arizona State University; Source Info: Oct2015, Vol. 104 Issue 4, p433; Subject Term: STEM education; Subject Term: RESEARCH; Subject Term: INTERPERSONAL communication -- Research; Subject Term: COMMUNICATIVE competence -- Research; Subject Term: GRADUATE students; Subject Term: ENGINEERING -- Study & teaching; Author-Supplied Keyword: female graduate students; Author-Supplied Keyword: instrument development; Author-Supplied Keyword: interpersonal communication; Number of Pages: 21p; Document Type: Article