Does Homework Help or Hinder Students?


homework.gifAll students will say that they would be happier if they did not have to do homework everyday after school. But is laziness the only reason? What are the effects of giving a student too much homework each night? Besides the most common academic effect of a better understanding of the material, which is not always the case. Nonacademic effects of too much homework can have detrimental physical, mental, and social impacts on a student. I read a study done about the subject that shows the nonacademic effects of homework in privileged, high-performing high schools.


The authors Mollie Galloway, Lewis & Clark College's Graduate School of Education and Counseling, Jerusha Conner, Villanova University, and Denise Pope, Stanford University, used data from online and paper surveys of 4,317 students at 10 high-performing high schools in communities with a median household income of more than $90,000 per year. The researchers found that the more homework given, students are more inclined to "stress, physical distress, inability to find time for friends and family, and likelihood of dropping one or more activities." The study also notes that beyond two hours of homework a night may have "detrimental achievement effects."


I read an article that explains alternate methods to after-school learning.  These methods can replace the normal way we do homework. Spaced repetition is one example of the kind of evidence-based technique that researchers have found has a positive impact on students' learning.  Spaced repetition works by giving smaller doses of information from various topics throughout the semester, instead of learning one topic at a time. The example the article used was in a history course. Students were given questions on readings about the Civil War and Reconstruction in brief sessions spread out over a longer period of time. Researchers from the University of California-San Diego in 2007 reported, "With this approach, students would be re-exposed to information about the Civil War and Reconstruction in their homework a number of times during the semester. Eighth grade history students who tried a spaced approach to learning had nearly double the retention rate of students who studied the same material in a consolidated unit."


In 2010, a study published in the journal Applied Cognitive Psychology asked fourth-graders to work on solving four types of math problems, and then to take a test evaluating how well the had learned. "The scores of those whose practice problems were mixed up were more than double the scores of those students who had practiced one kind of problem at a time." This shows how homework can greatly improve while not increasing the amount of time spent each night.


This is a topic that I found to be very interesting. Learning styles is something that i have found fascinating for a long time now because I personally try different ways to study every time I have a test so that I can eventually figure out the way that works the best to retain the information I study. After reading this I will probably mix up my studies instead on focusing on one main point of a chapter at a time.

Heres an overview of different learning styles.

This is a topic that obviously affects us as students. I feel like we should be more involved in the conversation of what does and does not work in the classroom. I don't think it is fair that some 65 year old is implementing policies throughout any school without taking basically any feedback from the students themselves. I think they don't ask for our opinions because they think that we will just make suggestions that will make the class easier. And maybe they are right, for some people. But some of us understand that it is up to us to advance the world in the future and would most definitely offer opinions that would make the class better and have students learn more. What do you think?

While it is mostly agreed homework is an disliked tasked it is shown in many studies to help the success of the students. I never thought about how it could be beneficial to mix up material however and not just study certain topics one at a time. It would be interesting to see this study on college students.

Us students can all relate to this subject. This is definitely something that we all feel effects our lives. After a long day of classes, the last thing we want to do is more busy school work. I read an article that sums up homework being assigned. I gathered it is important to give out homework so students can learn concepts, but it is important to not try to squeeze too much material into these assignments.

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