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Work in Progress: The Effects of Hands-on Learning on STEM Students' Motivation and Self-efficacy: A Meta-Analysis

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2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Efforts to Understand and Support Students' Socioemotional Factors

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

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Paper Authors


Olufunso Oje Washington State University

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Olufunso Oje is a Masters student in the Educational Psychology program at Washington State University. His research interests include learning strategies in engineering education. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and a deep background in computing and software programming.

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Olusola Adesope Washington State University

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Dr. Olusola O. Adesope is a Professor of Educational Psychology and a Boeing Distinguished Professor of STEM Education at Washington State University, Pullman. His research is at the intersection of educational psychology, learning sciences, and instructional design and technology. His recent research focuses on the cognitive and pedagogical underpinnings of learning with computer-based multimedia resources; knowledge representation through interactive concept maps; meta-analysis of empirical research, and investigation of instructional principles and assessments in STEM. He is currently a Senior Associate Editor of the Journal of Engineering Education.

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Adurangba Victor Oje University of Georgia

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Victor Oje is a doctoral student in the College of Engineering at the University of Georgia focusing on engineering education research. He is affiliated with the Engineering Education Transformation Institute and the school of Electrical and Computer Engineering. His research interest focuses on instructional design in remote and virtual environments and students' interaction with learning environments. He is also interested in learning process measures; educational measurement and validation; learning strategies and engagement, and systematic review/meta-analysis research methodology.

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This study is a work-in-progress meta-analysis that surveys the landscape of literature on the effects of hands-on learning on students’ motivation and self-efficacy in STEM domains. Following well-established standards for conducting rigorous meta-analyses, selection criteria were developed and searches systematically conducted on relevant databases using specific keyword combinations. After an extensive search of over 3,000 studies, data from 24 independent studies involving 2006 participants that met specified selection criteria were extracted and reported in this work-in-progress study. Overall weighted mean effect size shows a moderate statistically significant hands-on learning effect for motivation (d = 0.52, SE = 0.09, p < 0.01) and a near moderate statistically significant effect for self-efficacy (d = 0.51, SE = 0.13, p < 0.01). However, these overall weighted means were moderated by several factors including prior knowledge. This meta-analysis suggests that hands-on learning in the classroom may be associated with increased motivation and self-efficacy and, therefore, beneficial for learning regardless of students’ educational level.

Oje, O., & Adesope, O., & Oje, A. V. (2021, July), Work in Progress: The Effects of Hands-on Learning on STEM Students' Motivation and Self-efficacy: A Meta-Analysis Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference.

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