Teacher Education, Educational Leadership & Policy ETDs

Publication Date




The study was conducted at Northern Arizona University during the fall semester of 1968. It involved a total of six instructors, all full time members of the mathematics faculty, and 304 students; 203 in 6 classes of general mathematics and 101 in 61 classes of college algebra.

The directed homework classes received assignments that were taken up at the next class meeting, graded, scored, re­corded, and returned. The non-directed classes received the same assignments, but the homework was not taken up. There were lectures and discussion in both groups prior to assign­ing homework and after it was turned in.


The primary object1lve of the research was to determine whether student achievement, as measured by adjusted post­test means, was affected by their membership in directed or non-directed homework groups. A second objective was to determine whether student achievement was affected by mem­bership in different instructor groups.

The basic comparison was between adjusted post-test means of the two homework groups and of the instructor groups. Interaction between homework and instructor and the criterion (post-test) was also examined.


Students were administered a pre-test on the first day of classes. This teat s1erved as the covariate for the unit tests and the final examination.

There were five unit tests in general mathematics and four in college algebra;, both courses had a final examina­tion.

There were five unit tests in general mathematics and four in college algebra; both courses had a final examination as well. Before the study of a unit was begun, instructors were given a set of obje1ctives for the unit, which served as guides for test construction. Analysis of covariance was the statistical method used for analysis of data.


(1) Students taught under the directed and non­-directed groups did not differ significantly in their achievement, as measured by their post-test scores, on any of the unit tests or the final examination. This applies to both general mathematics and college algebra.

(2) General mathematics students taught under different instructors did differ significantly in their achievement on some unit tests but not on others. The achievements did differ significantly on all four unit tests in college algebra. There was no significant difference in achievement on the final examinations in either general mathematics or college algebra.

(3) No significant interaction occurred in any of the unit tests or final examination for general mathematics. One test in college algebra produced significant interaction; the final examination did not produce significant interaction.

Document Type




Degree Name

Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

Level of Degree


Department Name

Teacher Education, Educational Leadership & Policy

First Committee Member (Chair)

Wilson Howard Ivins

Second Committee Member

Merle Mitchell

Third Committee Member

Tom Wiley