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Homework and Grades

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Author: Judee Shipman

Grade Level: 9th - 12th; Type: Cognitive Science

Objective:

Determine the effect of homework on academic performance.

The goals of this project are:

  1. To scientifically observe of the effect of homework on final grades.
  2. To create an imaginative display.

Research Questions:

  • How does homework affect grades, and to what degree?
  • How many hours per school day, on average, do kids spend doing homework?
  • What is the optimal amount of homework time per school day?

It's generally assumed that doing homework improves grades. Some educators reason that the more hours of homework kids do, the higher the grades they achieve.  Other educators disagree. This project involves a simple, well-controlled scientific experiment to test the effect of academic workload on final grades.

Materials:

  • Computer with Internet access
  • Color printer
  • Digital camera
  • Typical office/hobby/hardware/craft supplies (paper, poster board, glue, etc.).
  • Ten classroom teachers (volunteers).

Experimental Procedure:

  1. Carefully study the related literature (see bibliography below).
  2. Address all of the terms and research questions mentioned here.
  3. Search and print out interesting images relevant to your topic.
  4. Take interesting photos throughout the course of the experiment.
  5. Get 10 volunteers who are teachers to agree to participate in this study. Tell them they will be asked to provide a list of GPAs (or report card grades) for each of their students at the end of a semester, WITH THE STUDENTS NAMES REMOVED to protect their privacy. Select FIVE teachers who assign less than one hour of homework (or no homework) each day. Select another FIVE teachers who assign 2 hours or more of homework each day.
  6. Collect grade info from each teacher at the end of a semester.
  7. Analyze your data.  Determine whether or not there's a correlation between grades and the amount of homework assigned.
  8. Explain your findings in a detailed report.
  9. Include graphics, charts and diagrams in your science fair display. 

Terms/Concepts: GPA; Statistical significance

References:

 

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