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Effects of Self-Recording and Contingent Credit on Balancing Participation Across Students


This study compared the effects of students’ (a) receiving participation credit with and without self-recording their participation and (b) self-recording participation with and without receiving credit for participation on the percentage of students functioning at four participation levels: non-participation, credit-level participation, frequent participation (slightly above credit-level), and dominant participation (2.5+ times above credit-level). Participants came from three sections of a relatively large discussion course (initially 55 students per section). Credit (with and without self-recording participation) decreased the percentage of both non-participants and dominant participants and increased the percentage of credit-level participants, thus creating greater balance in participation across students in each class. In contrast, self-recording versus non-self-recording (with and without credit) did not significantly differentiate the percentages of either non-participants or frequent participants but did differentiate the percentages of credit-level and dominant participants under the recording conditions.

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Correspondence to R. L. Williams.

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Krohn, K.R., Aspiranti, K.B., Foster, L.N. et al. Effects of Self-Recording and Contingent Credit on Balancing Participation Across Students. J Behav Educ 19, 134–155 (2010).

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  • Class participation
  • Large discussion classes
  • College level
  • Contingent credit
  • Self-recording