Learn before testing or test before learning?

I’m just catching up on my reading of New Scientist and in last week’s (13th July) issue I have found this from a ‘one minute’ interview with Anant Agarwal, president of the edX MOOC provider.

Question: What was the first course you offered – and what insights did it give you?

Answer: It was on circuits and electronics. In the first two weeks, about 70% of the students accessed the course video first, then did their homework. By midway through, 60% of students did their homework first, then watched the video. We learned that it’s more motivational to be given something to solve and then go get the knowledge, as needed.

This entry was posted in MOOC, testing effect and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Learn before testing or test before learning?

  1. Linda Fowler says:

    Depends, I’ve had students struggle to complete a task because of procedural/software problem (e.g. GIS) who would have completed it more quickly and less frustratingly if they had done some background first.

  2. Sally Jordan says:

    I agree Linda, but perhaps the key point is that students don’t always use quizzes in the way we expect. At the OU we see that with the ‘Maths Skills ebook’ (http://www.open.ac.uk/science/main/files/science/file/maths-skills.pdf ) where the accompanying questions (https://students.open.ac.uk/openmark/science.mathsskillsquestions/) were devised to test the content but many students do the questions first.

  3. Pingback: www.burning-furniture.de

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *