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A Comparison of Student Learning Between Graded Homework and Suggested Problems

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Thermodynamics, Fluids and Heat Transfer II

Tagged Division

Mechanical Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

26.24.1 - 26.24.12



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Paper Authors

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Thomas Shepard University of St. Thomas


Deify Law California State University, Fresno

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Dr. Deify Law is an assistant professor of mechanical engineering department at California State University, Fresno. Dr. Law teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the broad areas of thermo-fluids, transport phenomena, and fluid dynamics.

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A Comparison of Student Learning Between Graded Homework and Suggested ProblemsThis paper examines the impact of assigning graded homework problems versus providingsuggested problems on student exam performance in an introductory fluid mechanics course.Students at two different universities had specific chapters from the textbook for which gradedhomework was assigned and other chapters for which suggested problems were provided.Solutions to both the graded and suggested problems were provided roughly one week after theywere assigned. Student performance on quiz and exam questions was then analyzed to determineif one mode of problem assignment resulted in increased learning. A weekly survey was used todetermine the number of hours students applied to each problem assignment. It was found thatstudents spent on average one extra hour on a graded homework assignment than suggestedproblems. Interestingly there was no significant difference in exam performance on questionswhich related to suggested homework problems than questions related to graded homeworkproblems. The paper further relates these results to course design and discusses the implicationsfor academic misconduct and student perception of learning.

Shepard, T., & Law, D. (2015, June), A Comparison of Student Learning Between Graded Homework and Suggested Problems Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23365

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