The Relationship Between Testing Condition and Student Test Scores

Skidmore, Ronald L.; Aagaard, Lola
December 2004
Journal of Instructional Psychology;Dec2004, Vol. 31 Issue 4, p304
Academic Journal
Active student engagement with course materials, such as note-taking and cooperative learning, is associated with greater performance. This study investigated the relationship between scores achieved by students in an undergraduate course and active engagement during testing, whether using a cheat sheet or engaging in a form of cooperative testing. Subjects were 141 undergraduate students enrolled in a course required for admission to the teacher education program at a regional state university. Five multiple-choice tests were administered during the semester. Four testing conditions were sequentially implemented: (a) independent, (b) 'cheat sheet', (c) heterogeneous achievement group discussion, and (d) homogenous achievement group discussion along with a 'cheat sheet.' Wilcoxon signed-ranks test showed significant gains for all alternative testing conditions over the independent condition. Heterogeneous achievement group discussion had the largest effect size, overall, but responses to the other two testing conditions differed depending on students' prior achievement levels. Results suggest implications for the effective use of individual and cooperative testing procedures.


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