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 Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

nachricht Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester

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: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cholesterol-lowering drugs may fight infectious disease

22.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Meter-sized single-crystal graphene growth becomes possible

22.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells

22.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>