Pro And Cons Of Homework

Too much homework can demoralize students and lead to lower test scores.

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The basic question that is being asked is this: Do we really need homework?Now, as schools are shifting to the new (and hotly debated) Common Core curriculum standards, educators, administrators and researchers are turning a fresh eye toward the question of homework's value.But when it comes to deciphering the research literature on the subject, homework is anything but an open book. Spend more time practicing multiplication or studying Spanish vocabulary and you should get better at math or Spanish. Homework can indeed produce academic benefits, such as increased understanding and retention of the material, says Duke University social psychologist Harris Cooper, Ph D, one of the nation's leading homework researchers. In a review of studies published from 1987 to 2003, Cooper and his colleagues found that homework was linked to better test scores in high school and, to a lesser degree, in middle school.While American students do more homework than many of their international competitors, their overall test scores are average.Controversy over the pros and cons of homework continues unabated."I think there's a focus on assigning homework because [teachers] think it has these positive outcomes for study skills and habits.But we don't know for sure that's the case." Even when homework is helpful, there can be too much of a good thing.Numerous studies have shown that homework that is assigned, marked, and handed back (such as a worksheet on long division) is effective in increasing knowledge of a subject matter. Funnily enough, different studies have shown that homework does not necessarily increase a student's knowledge base, and is not an effective learning and teaching tool. As you can see, there are a lot of varying views on the necessity and even helpfulness of homework, especially for children, pre-teens, and early adolescents. What you should take away from the information above is that not all homework is created equal; ideally, every learning experience you engage in should be meaningful and include components that cater to various learning styles. For as long as kids have been whining about doing their homework, parents and education reformers have complained that homework's benefits are dubious.Meanwhile many teachers argue that take-home lessons are key to helping students learn.


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