Davis & Zane

A Comparison of Reading Response Methods to Increase Student Learning

Cheryl J. Davis, Endicott College, Northborough, Massachusetts, USA
Thomas Zane, Endicott College, Northborough, Massachusetts, USA


It is common in college courses to test students on the required readings for that course. With a rise in online education it is often the case that students are required to provide evidence of reading the material. However, there is little empirical research stating the best written means to assess that students read the materials. This study experimentally compared the effect of assigned reading summaries or study questions on student test performance. The results revealed that study questions produced higher quiz scores and higher preparation for the quiz, based on student feedback. Limitations of the study included a small sample size and extraneous activities that may have affected general knowledge on a topic. Results suggest that study questions focusing students on critical information in the required readings improve student learning. 


online instruction, reading summaries, student outcomes, study questions

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