Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Hard-working at school, sluggish at home

17.07.2006
What motivates students of different ages to complete their math homework assignments?

A study published in the July/August issue of the journal Child Development sheds new light on the age-old issue of homework, finding that students' general level of conscientiousness predicts how much effort they put into their homework.

The study, from researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin, Germany, the Leibniz Institute for Science Education in Kiel, Germany, and Humboldt University in Berlin, also found that students' beliefs about how well they will perform on their homework, their interest in the subject and their beliefs about the relevance of the assignments predicts their homework behavior.

The researchers set out to understand why homework, a potentially powerful instructional device, is also often a "battlefield" for students, parents, teachers and administrators. Among the key questions they explored: Why do some students work hard on their homework while others don't?

They used two questionnaires to collect self-reports from students about their math homework and classwork. In the first questionnaire, they asked 2,712 students in grades five, seven and nine about the effort and time they invested in their homework, as well as their own perceptions of their ability and interest in mathematics. In the second questionnaire, 571 students in grades eight and nine answered questions about their homework effort, motivation and the homework assigned by their teacher.

The researchers found that age plays a role in homework, with children in lower grades showing greater effort and motivation. One possible explanation for this finding, said lead author Ulrich Trautwein, PhD., of the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, is that studiousness may conflict with both female and male gender identities in adolescence. However, he noted, a key component in older students was interest in the topic.

Generally, students reported less effort and motivation for homework than for classwork. However, one exception to this finding is that while highly conscientious students reported an equal amount of effort on homework and classwork, less conscientious students reported putting less effort into their homework than into their classwork.

"We also found that the time students spend on homework was nearly uncorrelated with homework effort and motivation," Trautwein said. In other words: "Homework time should not be equated with effort on homework."

The findings suggest that parents and teachers could intervene to improve students' homework effort by improving students' beliefs that they can do well, increasing their interest in the subject and providing a sense that the assignments are useful, he concluded.

Andrea Browning | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.srcd.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Urbanization to convert 300,000 km2 of prime croplands
27.12.2016 | Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) gGmbH

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Solar Collectors from Ultra-High Performance Concrete Combine Energy Efficiency and Aesthetics

16.01.2017 | Trade Fair News

3D scans for the automotive industry

16.01.2017 | Automotive Engineering

Nanoparticle Exposure Can Awaken Dormant Viruses in the Lungs

16.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>