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Effects of different schedules and availability of answers on learning Kokoskin, William Joseph Alexander

Abstract

This study was motivated by the author's belief both as a teacher and researcher that the method of presenting answers to students who are in the process of learning is important to their learning. The two main variables studied were the availability of answers and the proportion of answers. A basic 3x2 factorial design was used with two levels of availability: 1) available 2) non-available and three levels of proportion of answers 1) 80% of the answers given 2) 20% incorrect answers given 3) all the answers given. Two topics, solving equations of the first degree and simplifying exponential expressions were used as the subject material. Four grade eleven classes were given instruction and then pretested on the particular topic. Then the six treatments were randomly assigned in a stratified way and the students proceeded to the exercises pertaining to the particular topic. A posttest was administered after a particular topic was completed. Then the students were re-assigned topics while maintaining their same treatment. The students followed the same procedure as above of lecture, pretest, exercises and posttest. An analysis of co-variance was calculated on each of the groups according to topic, order of unit, and particular group. The pretest was covaried on the posttest. Students were also asked to rank-order their preference for answer sheets or treatments. The results indicated that the availability factor had no statistically significant effect on the student's performance on any topic although the students favored the non-available answers. The results also showed that the students who were given 80% of the answers and those who were given 2 0% incorrect answers, performed better than the group who was given all the answers. This was statistically significant with the group who followed the sequence solving equations of the first degree then simplifying exponential expressions and only pertained to the simplifying of exponential expressions. The results were discussed in terms of the particular topics involved and the variables that were under study. Suggestions for further studies were made in terms of the results of this study.

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