June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
NSF Grantees Poster Session
23.114.1 - 23.114.15
A STUDY OF THE IMPACT OF PEER-LED TEAM LEARNING ON THE FIRST-YEAR MATH COURSE PERFORMANCE OF ENGINEERING STUDENTSAbstractAs part of an NSF-sponsored STEP grant, formal peer-led team learning study groupswere created for first-year engineering and computer science students. The groups wereorganized around the math course taken by the students so that all students in the studygroup were taking the same math course. In both the 2010-11 and 2011-12 academicyears, these groups were offered as a formal class, with students receiving a grade basedupon participation. This was done to stress the importance of the groups to the students,and increase the level of participation by the students. Work with the groups in previousyears showed that increased levels of participation led to greater impacts on studentgrades.Study groups typically featured 8-10 students, and were directed by an upper-levelengineering or computer science student. The student leader would pose problems to thestudents in the class. These problems came from homework assigned in the math classes,additional non-assigned problems from the math books, and outside sources. Thestudents then work on the problems together, until a solution is found. The student leaderwould provide guidance if the students were unable to solve a problem withoutassistance, but would not completely solve the problems for the students.Approximately 73% of the first-year students in engineering and computer scienceparticipated in these study groups in 2010-11, with most students attending most of theweekly sessions. This participation rate increased to 82% in 2011-12. The impact of thestudy groups on students in Calculus-level classes (Calculus I and II) was strong. Whencompared to all students in the Calculus courses who did not participate in the studygroups, the grades of the students who participated in the study groups were generally0.4-0.7 points (on a 4-point scale) higher. However, the results at the Pre-Calculus level(College Algebra and Trigonometry) were not as impressive. Students in the studygroups in College Algebra only had average grades 0.2 points higher than non-participants, while the Trigonometry students demonstrated little impact from the studygroups. This difference may be a result of the students’ self-perceived need for the studygroups, with Calculus-level students seeing greater benefit from the groups and taking thegroups more seriously.In this paper, the format of the study groups will be described in detail, and a detailedanalysis of the impact of the study groups on the student grades will be presented.
Reisel, J. R., & Jablonski, M., & Munson, E. (2013, June), A Study of the Impact of Peer-Led Team Learning on the First-Year Math Course Performance of Engineering Students Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19128
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