Track

Research Proposal / Online Learning

Proposal Abstract

Do online homework management systems improve student learning? Do they work as well for adult learners in an online course? This natural experiment divided a sample of 2500 online students in an entry level university economics course into three treatment groups to look at the relationship between homework support and quiz scores. Group A got no homework support. Group B got simple Microsoft Excel templates. Group C got an online homework management system. Join us for this interactive session where we’ll discuss our findings and collect your ideas on how these findings might translate into practice.

Proposal Description

How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice. It’s true for musicians and the literature suggests it is equally true for students hoping to master quantitative disciplines at the university level. Online homework management systems provide a means for extensive practice with immediate feedback, which research suggests should lead to increased student learning. Do these systems work for adult learners in an online course? Does the use of a web-based homework management system relate to improved student exam scores? Does the use of simple Microsoft Excel-based homework templates relate to improved student exam scores?

Findings from previous studies are mixed. Halcrow and Dunnigan (2012) found online homework management systems helped increase student learning and student motivation. Rhodes and Sarbaum (2015) found homework systems stimulate student guessing behaviors and lead to grade inflation. Cutshall, Mollick, and Bland (2009) showed students found the systems helpful. Would the results be similar for adult learners in a fully online environment?

This natural experiment divided a sample of 2500 online students in an entry level university economics course into three treatment groups. Treatment Group A were assigned problems to be submitted in Microsoft Excel documents, but were provided with no templates and no immediate feedback. Treatment Group B were assigned problems to be completed on Microsoft Excel templates that provided immediate feedback. Treatment Group C were assigned problems to be completed in a web-based homework management system with full explanations and multiple attempts allowed. This study which is currently underway, is looking at the relationship between homework scores and quiz scores as a measure of learning for each group.

Using interactive polling, the audience will participate throughout this presentation by providing your feedback on the findings of our study and ideas for incorporating these findings into your teaching practice.

Cutshall, R. C., Mollick, J. S., & Bland, E. M. (2009). Use of an e-textbook and web-based homework for an undergraduate business course: Students’ perceptions. Paper presented at the Association of Business Education/Finance Education Association joint conference.

Halcrow, C., & Dunnigan, G. (2012). Online Homework in Calculus I: Friend or Foe? PRIMUS, 22(8), 664-682.

Rhodes, M. T., & Sarbaum, J. K. (2015). Online Homework Management Systems: Should We Allow Multiple Attempts? American Economist, 60(2), 120.

Session Format

Presentation Session

Location

Room 2

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

 
Mar 29th, 11:00 AM Mar 29th, 11:45 AM

Practice. Practice. Practice. Do Homework Management Systems Work?

Room 2

Do online homework management systems improve student learning? Do they work as well for adult learners in an online course? This natural experiment divided a sample of 2500 online students in an entry level university economics course into three treatment groups to look at the relationship between homework support and quiz scores. Group A got no homework support. Group B got simple Microsoft Excel templates. Group C got an online homework management system. Join us for this interactive session where we’ll discuss our findings and collect your ideas on how these findings might translate into practice.