A Classroom Study on the Relationship Between Student Achievement and Retrieval-Enhanced Learning
- 841 Downloads
Retrieval practice has been shown to produce powerful learning gains in laboratory experiments but has seldom been explored in classrooms as a means of enhancing students’ learning of their course-relevant material. Furthermore, research is lacking concerning the role of individual differences in learning from retrieval. The current study explored the effects of retrieval in a large undergraduate introductory biology course as a function of individual differences in student achievement. Students completed in-class exercises that required them to retrieve course information (e.g., recalling definitions for terms and labeling diagrams) followed by feedback or to simply copy the information without retrieving it. A later quiz over the information showed that high-performing students benefited more from retrieving than copying, whereas middle- and low-performing students benefited more from copying than retrieving. When asked to predict their quiz scores following the in-class exercises, high-performers demonstrated better overall metacognitive calibration compared to middle- or low-performers. These results highlight the importance of individual differences in learning from retrieval and encourage future research using course-relevant material to consider the role of student achievement in classroom-based interventions.
KeywordsRetrieval-enhanced learning Student achievement Individual differences Metacognition
Shana K. Carpenter, Terry J. S. Lund, and Patrick I. Armstrong, Department of Psychology, Iowa State University; Clark R. Coffman, Department of Genetics, Development, and Cell Biology, Iowa State University; Monica H. Lamm, Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Iowa State University; Robert D. Reason, School of Education, Iowa State University.
Portions of this study were presented at the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of Biology Education Research (Minneapolis, MN, July 2014). We thank Tyler McGrath for creating the images for the in-class exercises, and Chad Fernandez, Shuhebur Rahman, Andrew Woods, and Kristi Harris for their assistance with scoring the quizzes and in-class exercises.
- Agarwal, P. K., Karpicke, J. D., Kang, S. H. K., Roediger, H. L. III, & McDermott, K. B. (2008). Examining the testing effect with open- and closed-book tests. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 22, 861–876.Google Scholar
- Anderson, L. W., Krathwohl, D. R., Airasian, P. W., Cruikshank, K. A., Mayer, R. E., Pintrich, P. R., Raths, J., & Wittrock, M. C. (2001). A taxonomy for learning, teaching, and assessing: a revision of bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives. New York: Longman.Google Scholar
- Butler, A. C. (2010). Repeated testing produces superior transfer of learning relative to repeated studying. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 36, 1118–1133.Google Scholar
- Carpenter, S. K. (2009). Cue strength as a moderator of the testing effect: the benefits of elaborative retrieval. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 35, 1563–1569.Google Scholar
- Carpenter, S. K. (2011). Semantic information activated during retrieval contributes to later retention: support for the mediator effectiveness hypothesis of the testing effect. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 37, 1547–1552.Google Scholar
- Carpenter, S. K., & Olson, K. M. (2012). Are pictures good for learning new vocabulary in a foreign language? Only if you think they are not. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 38, 92–101.Google Scholar
- Clark, D.A., & Svinicki, M. (2014). The effect of retrieval on post-task enjoyment of studying. Educational Psychology Review, 27, 51-67.Google Scholar
- Cooper, G., Tindall-Ford, S., Chandler, P., & Sweller, J. (2001). Learning by imagining. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 7, 68–82.Google Scholar
- Finn, B., & Metcalfe, J. (2007). The role of memory for past test in the underconfidence with practice effect. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 33, 238–244.Google Scholar
- Halamish, V., & Bjork, R. A. (2011). When does testing enhance retention? A distribution-based interpretation of retrieval as a memory modifier. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 37, 801–812.Google Scholar
- Karpicke, J.D., Blunt, J.R., Smith, M.A., & Karpicke, S.S. (2014). Retrieval-based learning: the need for guided retrieval in elementary-school children. Journal of Applied Research in Memory & Cognition, 3, 198-206.Google Scholar
- Kornell, N., Hays, M. J., & Bjork, R. A. (2009). Unsuccessful retrieval attempts enhance subsequent learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 35, 989–998.Google Scholar
- Kubik, V., Söderlund, H., Nilsson, L-G., & Jönsson, F.U. (2014). Individual and combined effects of enactment and testing on memory for action phrases. Experimental Psychology, 61, 347-355.Google Scholar
- Lee, C. H., & Kalyuga, S. (2014). Expertise reversal effect and its instructional implications. In V. A. Benassi, C. E. Overson, & C. M. Hakala (Eds.), Applying the science of learning in education: Infusing psychological science into the curriculum (pp. 31–44). Retrieved from the Society for the Teaching of Psychology website:http://teachpsych.org/ebooks/asle2014/index.php.
- Miller, T. M., & Geraci, L. (2011). Unskilled but aware: reinterpreting overconfidence in low-performing students. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 37, 502–506.Google Scholar
- Pashler, H., Cepeda, N. J., Wixted, J. T., & Rohrer, D. (2005). When does feedback facilitate learning of words ? Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 31, 3–8.Google Scholar
- Pashler, H., Bain, P., Bottge, B., Graesser, A., Koedinger, K., McDaniel, M. A., & Metcalfe, J. (2007). Organizing instruction and study to improve student learning (NCER 2007–2004). Washington, DC: U. S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Research, Institute of Education Sciences. Retrieved from http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc/pdf/practiceguides/20072004.pdf.
- Peterson, D. J., & Mulligan, N. W. (2013). The negative testing effect and multifactor account. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 39, 1287–1293.Google Scholar
- Roediger, H. L. III, & Butler, A. C. (2011). The critical role of retrieval practice in long-term retention. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 15, 20–27.Google Scholar
- Roediger, H. L. III., & Karpicke, J. D. (2006). Test-enhanced learning: taking memory tests improves long-term retention. Psychological Science, 17, 249–255.Google Scholar
- Roediger, H. L. III, Agarwal, P. K., McDaniel, M. A., & McDermott, K. B. (2011). Test-enhanced learning in the classroom: long-term improvements from quizzing. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 17, 382–395.Google Scholar
- Szpunar, K. K., Jing, H. G., & Schacter, D. L. (2014). Overcoming overconfidence in learning from video-recorded lectures: implications of interpolated testing for online education. Journal of Applied Research in Memory & Cognition, 3, 161-164.Google Scholar
- Tse, C.-S., & Pu, X. (2012). The effectiveness of test-enhanced learning depends on trait test anxiety and working-memory capacity. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 18, 253–264.Google Scholar