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Sep 13, by Cory Armes, M. But somehow their homework still bled over into my life… So, how important is this icon of education? So, what is the answer — is homework helpful or harmful? Do we continue current practices or throw homework out altogether? Remember the main purposes of homework: Assign homework that includes very few concepts so students can learn them on a deeper level Healy, Match homework to the learning goal for a more focused learning experience.
Provide appropriate and timely feedback. Students need to know what was correct, what needs to be changed, etc. Waiting several days or even weeks to provide feedback limits or even eliminates the effectiveness of the assignment. Parental involvement should be limited to facilitating the completion of homework — not teaching content or doing the work for a child.
Parents who get too involved in an assignment inhibit rather than enhance learning. I think that homework can helpful because it will help a child learn responsibilities and it can be bad for health at times. Meanwhile many teachers argue that take-home lessons are key to helping students learn. But when it comes to deciphering the research literature on the subject, homework is anything but an open book.
In many ways, homework seems like common sense. Spend more time practicing multiplication or studying Spanish vocabulary and you should get better at math or Spanish. But it may not be that simple. But not all students benefit. In a review of studies published from to , Cooper and his colleagues found that homework was linked to better test scores in high school and, to a lesser degree, in middle school.
Yet they found only faint evidence that homework provided academic benefit in elementary school Review of Educational Research , Homework proponents also cite the nonacademic advantages it might confer, such as the development of personal responsibility, good study habits and time-management skills. Even when homework is helpful, there can be too much of a good thing. He agrees with an oft-cited rule of thumb that students should do no more than 10 minutes a night per grade level — from about 10 minutes in first grade up to a maximum of about two hours in high school.
In fact, too much homework can do more harm than good. Researchers have cited drawbacks, including boredom and burnout toward academic material, less time for family and extracurricular activities, lack of sleep and increased stress.
But when kids reported having more than 90 to minutes of homework per day, scores declined Journal of Educational Psychology , But are teachers sticking to the minute rule? Studies attempting to quantify time spent on homework are all over the map, in part because of wide variations in methodology, Pope says. A report by the Brookings Institution examined the question of homework, comparing data from a variety of sources.
That report cited findings from a survey of first-year college students in which That was down from They found that between and , there was a slight increase in homework for 9-year-olds, but homework amounts for and year-olds stayed roughly the same, or even decreased slightly. The researchers suggested that for 12th graders the optimum amount of homework might lie between 1. Still, researchers have offered various recommendations.
For example, Good and Brophy cautioned that teachers must take care not to assign too much homework. Thus, 5 to 10 minutes per subject might be appropriate for 4th graders, whereas 30 to 60 minutes might be appropriate for college-bound high school students. Cooper, Robinson, and Patall also issued a strong warning about too much homework: Even for these oldest students, too much homework may diminish its effectiveness or even become counterproductive. He added that when required reading is included as a type of homework, the minute rule might be increased to 15 minutes.
Focusing on the amount of time students spend on homework, however, may miss the point. A significant proportion of the research on homework indicates that the positive effects of homework relate to the amount of homework that the student completes rather than the amount of time spent on homework or the amount of homework actually assigned. Thus, simply assigning homework may not produce the desired effect—in fact, ill-structured homework might even have a negative effect on student achievement.
Teachers must carefully plan and assign homework in a way that maximizes the potential for student success see Research-Based Homework Guidelines. Another question regarding homework is the extent to which schools should involve parents. Some studies have reported minimal positive effects or even negative effects for parental involvement. They recommended interactive homework in which Parents receive clear guidelines spelling out their role. Teachers do not expect parents to act as experts regarding content or to attempt to teach the content.
Parents ask questions that help students clarify and summarize what they have learned. Good and Brophy provided the following recommendations regarding parent involvement: Although research has established the overall viability of homework as a tool to enhance student achievement, for the most part the research does not provide recommendations that are specific enough to help busy practitioners.
This is the nature of research—it errs on the side of assuming that something does not work until substantial evidence establishes that it does.
The research community takes a long time to formulate firm conclusions on the basis of research. Homework is a perfect example: Figure 1 includes synthesis studies that go back as far as 60 years, yet all that research translates to a handful of recommendations articulated at a very general level. In addition, research in a specific area, such as homework, sometimes contradicts research in related areas.
For example, Cooper recommended on the basis of plus years of homework research that teachers should not comment on or grade every homework assignment. Riehl pointed out the similarity between education research and medical research.
She commented, When reported in the popular media, medical research often appears as a blunt instrument, able to obliterate skeptics or opponents by the force of its evidence and arguments. Yet repeated visits to the medical journals themselves can leave a much different impression.
The serious medical journals convey the sense that medical research is an ongoing conversation and quest, punctuated occasionally by important findings that can and should alter practice, but more often characterized by continuing investigations. These investigations, taken cumulatively, can inform the work of practitioners who are building their own local knowledge bases on medical care. If relying solely on research is problematic, what are busy practitioners to do?
Instead, educators should combine research-based generalizations, research from related areas, and their own professional judgment based on firsthand experience to develop specific practices and make adjustments as necessary. Educators can develop the most effective practices by observing changes in the achievement of the students with whom they work every day.
Research-Based Homework Guidelines Research provides strong evidence that, when used appropriately, homework benefits student achievement.
To make sure that homework is appropriate, teachers should follow these guidelines: Design homework to maximize the chances that students will complete it. For example, ensure that homework is at the appropriate level of difficulty. Students should be able to complete homework assignments independently with relatively high success rates, but they should still find the assignments challenging enough to be interesting.
When mom and dad help: Student reflections on parent involvement with homework. Journal of Research and Development in Education, 31 3 , — The instructional effects of feedback in test-like events. Review of Educational Research, 61 2 , — The case against homework: How homework is hurting our children and what we can do about it.
The search for methods of group instruction as effective as one-toone tutoring. Educational Leadership, 41 8 , 4— Synthesis of research on homework. Educational Leadership, 47 3 , 85— The battle over homework 3rd ed. Does homework improve academic achievement?
Help Customer Service eliminating traditional homework assignments in favor of family time. The change was quickly met with outrage from some parents, though it earned support from other.
Read this Miscellaneous Research Paper and over 88, other research documents. Is Homework Helpful or Harmful to Students. Homework has been around for a very long time. It is set and traced as a tradition of having teachers /5(1).
Is homework harmful or helpful? Education experts and parents weigh in. Research doesn't have all the answers, but a review of some existing data yields some helpful observations and guidance. How Much Homework Do Students Do? Survey data and anecdotal evidence show that some students spend hours nightly doing homework.
Fast ForWord Research & Independent Reviews The Great Homework Debate: Is Homework Helpful or Harmful to Students? Request info. Share this page: So, what is the answer – is homework helpful or harmful? Do we continue current practices or throw homework out altogether? Apr 23, · Homework is the perfect platform for parents to help children unravel the mystery to learning. Parents are in a unique position to hang the academic .