Testing Effect 071014

Testing Effect 071014 - Distributed Pretesting Running...

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Distributed Pretesting Running Head: PRE-TESTING IMPROVES EXAM PERFORMANCE Combined Online and In-Class Pre-testing Improves Exam Performance in General Psychology Arnold L. Glass, Gary Brill, and Margaret Ingate Rutgers University Correspondence should be addressed to: Arnold Glass Rutgers University Psychology Department 152 Frelinghuysen Road Piscataway NJ 08854 Phone: 732-445-2417 Fax: 732-445-2263 Email: [email protected] 1
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Distributed Pretesting Abstract This study examined the effect of distributed questioning on learning and retention in a college lecture course. A total of 48 pairs of 4-alternative multiple-choice questions were presented on three block exams and on the final. The two questions in each pair were related to each other so that knowing the answer to one question usually implied knowing the answer to the other. One question in each pair was included in an experimental condition, in which questions were presented on-line, in-class, or both on- line and in-class, before appearing on exams. These conditions were counter-balanced across sections. The control questions appeared only on exams. Together, providing the same question in advance of class online and in class had a significant long-term effect on the probability of knowing the answers to both experimental and control questions when they appeared on the block exam and final. These results demonstrate that together, coordinated online and in-class instruction can significantly improve exam performance. They are consistent with the hypothesis that distributed instruction creates more robust memory traces, rather than the hypothesis that it creates additional memory traces. Keywords: distributed study, testing effect 2
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Distributed Pretesting Combined Online and In-Class Pre-testing Improves Exam Performance in General Psychology The study of learning has revealed several effects of theoretical importance to the understanding of learning and of potential practical importance to pedagogy. Two of these effects were the focus of this study. The first of these was the finding that active study is more likely to produce long-term retention than passive study. The second effect was the finding that distributed repetition increases the duration of the interval over which study material is retained. Distributed Testing. Active Study . Any task that requires a response to the study material beyond mere repetition constitutes active study. For example, listening to or reading study material is passive study. However, answering a question about it or recalling the study material, after even a short delay, is active study. Much experimental research in cognition has demonstrated the superiority of active learning. An early example from the laboratory is the work of Bobrow and Bower (1969), which compared active and passive usage of linking sentences for learning lists of word pairs. For example, W w hen subjects made up their own linking sentences that included both for the words of the
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This note was uploaded on 04/05/2009 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 830 taught by Professor 346 during the Spring '09 term at Rutgers.

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Testing Effect 071014 - Distributed Pretesting Running...

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