When designing a course, deciding how to spend class time is an important decision. Hopefully instructors plan to incorporate as many evidenced based practices as possible. Two common practices are quizzes and reflections. Clinton (2018) wanted to know which strategy was more effective as both have been shown to improve learning outcomes.
The study conducted by Clinton compared exam performance and self-reported self-regulation across two sections of an introductory psychology course. One course engaged weekly quizzes, and reflections and the other engaged in longer quizzes without reflections. The results indicated that there were no differences across the different course sections. However, that means that both are effective at improving learning outcomes.
This article illustrated an important point that there are multiple useful elements that can be implemented into a course. One does not always have to be better than the other. It also reminded me of the utility of regularly spaced quizzes and reflections and what they can instill in students. Now, after reading this article, I don't have to feel guilty about tailoring course design elements to the class size because I know that quizzes and reflections are equally valid evidenced based learning strategies.
Clinton, V. (2018). Reflections versus extended quizzes: Which is better for student learning and self-regulation?. Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 18(1), 1-10.
written by Jen Blush