Does Homework Really Help Students Learn?

A conversation with a Wheelock researcher, a BU student, and a fourth-grade teacher

child doing homework

“Quality homework is engaging and relevant to kids’ lives,” says Wheelock’s Janine Bempechat. “It gives them autonomy and engages them in the community and with their families. In some subjects, like math, worksheets can be very helpful. It has to do with the value of practicing over and over.” Photo by iStock/Glenn Cook Photography

Do your homework.

If only it were that simple.

Educators have debated the merits of homework since the late 19th century. In recent years, amid concerns of some parents and teachers that children are being stressed out by too much homework, things have only gotten more fraught.

“Homework is complicated,” says developmental psychologist Janine Bempechat, a Wheelock College of Education & Human Development clinical professor. The author of the essay “ The Case for (Quality) Homework—Why It Improves Learning and How Parents Can Help ” in the winter 2019 issue of Education Next , Bempechat has studied how the debate about homework is influencing teacher preparation, parent and student beliefs about learning, and school policies.

She worries especially about socioeconomically disadvantaged students from low-performing schools who, according to research by Bempechat and others, get little or no homework.

BU Today  sat down with Bempechat and Erin Bruce (Wheelock’17,’18), a new fourth-grade teacher at a suburban Boston school, and future teacher freshman Emma Ardizzone (Wheelock) to talk about what quality homework looks like, how it can help children learn, and how schools can equip teachers to design it, evaluate it, and facilitate parents’ role in it.

BU Today: Parents and educators who are against homework in elementary school say there is no research definitively linking it to academic performance for kids in the early grades. You’ve said that they’re missing the point.

Bempechat : I think teachers assign homework in elementary school as a way to help kids develop skills they’ll need when they’re older—to begin to instill a sense of responsibility and to learn planning and organizational skills. That’s what I think is the greatest value of homework—in cultivating beliefs about learning and skills associated with academic success. If we greatly reduce or eliminate homework in elementary school, we deprive kids and parents of opportunities to instill these important learning habits and skills.

We do know that beginning in late middle school, and continuing through high school, there is a strong and positive correlation between homework completion and academic success.

That’s what I think is the greatest value of homework—in cultivating beliefs about learning and skills associated with academic success.

You talk about the importance of quality homework. What is that?

Quality homework is engaging and relevant to kids’ lives. It gives them autonomy and engages them in the community and with their families. In some subjects, like math, worksheets can be very helpful. It has to do with the value of practicing over and over.

Janine Bempechat

What are your concerns about homework and low-income children?

The argument that some people make—that homework “punishes the poor” because lower-income parents may not be as well-equipped as affluent parents to help their children with homework—is very troubling to me. There are no parents who don’t care about their children’s learning. Parents don’t actually have to help with homework completion in order for kids to do well. They can help in other ways—by helping children organize a study space, providing snacks, being there as a support, helping children work in groups with siblings or friends.

Isn’t the discussion about getting rid of homework happening mostly in affluent communities?

Yes, and the stories we hear of kids being stressed out from too much homework—four or five hours of homework a night—are real. That’s problematic for physical and mental health and overall well-being. But the research shows that higher-income students get a lot more homework than lower-income kids.

Teachers may not have as high expectations for lower-income children. Schools should bear responsibility for providing supports for kids to be able to get their homework done—after-school clubs, community support, peer group support. It does kids a disservice when our expectations are lower for them.

The conversation around homework is to some extent a social class and social justice issue. If we eliminate homework for all children because affluent children have too much, we’re really doing a disservice to low-income children. They need the challenge, and every student can rise to the challenge with enough supports in place.

What did you learn by studying how education schools are preparing future teachers to handle homework?

My colleague, Margarita Jimenez-Silva, at the University of California, Davis, School of Education, and I interviewed faculty members at education schools, as well as supervising teachers, to find out how students are being prepared. And it seemed that they weren’t. There didn’t seem to be any readings on the research, or conversations on what high-quality homework is and how to design it.

Erin, what kind of training did you get in handling homework?

Bruce : I had phenomenal professors at Wheelock, but homework just didn’t come up. I did lots of student teaching. I’ve been in classrooms where the teachers didn’t assign any homework, and I’ve been in rooms where they assigned hours of homework a night. But I never even considered homework as something that was my decision. I just thought it was something I’d pull out of a book and it’d be done.

I started giving homework on the first night of school this year. My first assignment was to go home and draw a picture of the room where you do your homework. I want to know if it’s at a table and if there are chairs around it and if mom’s cooking dinner while you’re doing homework.

The second night I asked them to talk to a grown-up about how are you going to be able to get your homework done during the week. The kids really enjoyed it. There’s a running joke that I’m teaching life skills.

Friday nights, I read all my kids’ responses to me on their homework from the week and it’s wonderful. They pour their hearts out. It’s like we’re having a conversation on my couch Friday night.

It matters to know that the teacher cares about you and that what you think matters to the teacher. Homework is a vehicle to connect home and school…for parents to know teachers are welcoming to them and their families.

Bempechat : I can’t imagine that most new teachers would have the intuition Erin had in designing homework the way she did.

Ardizzone : Conversations with kids about homework, feeling you’re being listened to—that’s such a big part of wanting to do homework….I grew up in Westchester County. It was a pretty demanding school district. My junior year English teacher—I loved her—she would give us feedback, have meetings with all of us. She’d say, “If you have any questions, if you have anything you want to talk about, you can talk to me, here are my office hours.” It felt like she actually cared.

Bempechat : It matters to know that the teacher cares about you and that what you think matters to the teacher. Homework is a vehicle to connect home and school…for parents to know teachers are welcoming to them and their families.

Ardizzone : But can’t it lead to parents being overbearing and too involved in their children’s lives as students?

Bempechat : There’s good help and there’s bad help. The bad help is what you’re describing—when parents hover inappropriately, when they micromanage, when they see their children confused and struggling and tell them what to do.

Good help is when parents recognize there’s a struggle going on and instead ask informative questions: “Where do you think you went wrong?” They give hints, or pointers, rather than saying, “You missed this,” or “You didn’t read that.”

Bruce : I hope something comes of this. I hope BU or Wheelock can think of some way to make this a more pressing issue. As a first-year teacher, it was not something I even thought about on the first day of school—until a kid raised his hand and said, “Do we have homework?” It would have been wonderful if I’d had a plan from day one.

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Senior Contributing Editor

Sara Rimer

Sara Rimer A journalist for more than three decades, Sara Rimer worked at the Miami Herald , Washington Post and, for 26 years, the New York Times , where she was the New England bureau chief, and a national reporter covering education, aging, immigration, and other social justice issues. Her stories on the death penalty’s inequities were nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and cited in the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision outlawing the execution of people with intellectual disabilities. Her journalism honors include Columbia University’s Meyer Berger award for in-depth human interest reporting. She holds a BA degree in American Studies from the University of Michigan. Profile

She can be reached at [email protected] .

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There are 81 comments on Does Homework Really Help Students Learn?

Insightful! The values about homework in elementary schools are well aligned with my intuition as a parent.

when i finish my work i do my homework and i sometimes forget what to do because i did not get enough sleep

same omg it does not help me it is stressful and if I have it in more than one class I hate it.

Same I think my parent wants to help me but, she doesn’t care if I get bad grades so I just try my best and my grades are great.

I think that last question about Good help from parents is not know to all parents, we do as our parents did or how we best think it can be done, so maybe coaching parents or giving them resources on how to help with homework would be very beneficial for the parent on how to help and for the teacher to have consistency and improve homework results, and of course for the child. I do see how homework helps reaffirm the knowledge obtained in the classroom, I also have the ability to see progress and it is a time I share with my kids

The answer to the headline question is a no-brainer – a more pressing problem is why there is a difference in how students from different cultures succeed. Perfect example is the student population at BU – why is there a majority population of Asian students and only about 3% black students at BU? In fact at some universities there are law suits by Asians to stop discrimination and quotas against admitting Asian students because the real truth is that as a group they are demonstrating better qualifications for admittance, while at the same time there are quotas and reduced requirements for black students to boost their portion of the student population because as a group they do more poorly in meeting admissions standards – and it is not about the Benjamins. The real problem is that in our PC society no one has the gazuntas to explore this issue as it may reveal that all people are not created equal after all. Or is it just environmental cultural differences??????

I get you have a concern about the issue but that is not even what the point of this article is about. If you have an issue please take this to the site we have and only post your opinion about the actual topic

This is not at all what the article is talking about.

This literally has nothing to do with the article brought up. You should really take your opinions somewhere else before you speak about something that doesn’t make sense.

we have the same name

so they have the same name what of it?

lol you tell her

totally agree

What does that have to do with homework, that is not what the article talks about AT ALL.

Yes, I think homework plays an important role in the development of student life. Through homework, students have to face challenges on a daily basis and they try to solve them quickly.I am an intense online tutor at 24x7homeworkhelp and I give homework to my students at that level in which they handle it easily.

More than two-thirds of students said they used alcohol and drugs, primarily marijuana, to cope with stress.

You know what’s funny? I got this assignment to write an argument for homework about homework and this article was really helpful and understandable, and I also agree with this article’s point of view.

I also got the same task as you! I was looking for some good resources and I found this! I really found this article useful and easy to understand, just like you! ^^

i think that homework is the best thing that a child can have on the school because it help them with their thinking and memory.

I am a child myself and i think homework is a terrific pass time because i can’t play video games during the week. It also helps me set goals.

Homework is not harmful ,but it will if there is too much

I feel like, from a minors point of view that we shouldn’t get homework. Not only is the homework stressful, but it takes us away from relaxing and being social. For example, me and my friends was supposed to hang at the mall last week but we had to postpone it since we all had some sort of work to do. Our minds shouldn’t be focused on finishing an assignment that in realty, doesn’t matter. I completely understand that we should have homework. I have to write a paper on the unimportance of homework so thanks.

homework isn’t that bad

Are you a student? if not then i don’t really think you know how much and how severe todays homework really is

i am a student and i do not enjoy homework because i practice my sport 4 out of the five days we have school for 4 hours and that’s not even counting the commute time or the fact i still have to shower and eat dinner when i get home. its draining!

i totally agree with you. these people are such boomers

why just why

they do make a really good point, i think that there should be a limit though. hours and hours of homework can be really stressful, and the extra work isn’t making a difference to our learning, but i do believe homework should be optional and extra credit. that would make it for students to not have the leaning stress of a assignment and if you have a low grade you you can catch up.

Studies show that homework improves student achievement in terms of improved grades, test results, and the likelihood to attend college. Research published in the High School Journal indicates that students who spent between 31 and 90 minutes each day on homework “scored about 40 points higher on the SAT-Mathematics subtest than their peers, who reported spending no time on homework each day, on average.” On both standardized tests and grades, students in classes that were assigned homework outperformed 69% of students who didn’t have homework. A majority of studies on homework’s impact – 64% in one meta-study and 72% in another – showed that take home assignments were effective at improving academic achievement. Research by the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) concluded that increased homework led to better GPAs and higher probability of college attendance for high school boys. In fact, boys who attended college did more than three hours of additional homework per week in high school.

So how are your measuring student achievement? That’s the real question. The argument that doing homework is simply a tool for teaching responsibility isn’t enough for me. We can teach responsibility in a number of ways. Also the poor argument that parents don’t need to help with homework, and that students can do it on their own, is wishful thinking at best. It completely ignores neurodiverse students. Students in poverty aren’t magically going to find a space to do homework, a friend’s or siblings to help them do it, and snacks to eat. I feel like the author of this piece has never set foot in a classroom of students.

THIS. This article is pathetic coming from a university. So intellectually dishonest, refusing to address the havoc of capitalism and poverty plays on academic success in life. How can they in one sentence use poor kids in an argument and never once address that poor children have access to damn near 0 of the resources affluent kids have? Draw me a picture and let’s talk about feelings lmao what a joke is that gonna put food in their belly so they can have the calories to burn in order to use their brain to study? What about quiet their 7 other siblings that they share a single bedroom with for hours? Is it gonna force the single mom to magically be at home and at work at the same time to cook food while you study and be there to throw an encouraging word?

Also the “parents don’t need to be a parent and be able to guide their kid at all academically they just need to exist in the next room” is wild. Its one thing if a parent straight up is not equipped but to say kids can just figured it out is…. wow coming from an educator What’s next the teacher doesn’t need to teach cause the kid can just follow the packet and figure it out?

Well then get a tutor right? Oh wait you are poor only affluent kids can afford a tutor for their hours of homework a day were they on average have none of the worries a poor child does. Does this address that poor children are more likely to also suffer abuse and mental illness? Like mentioned what about kids that can’t learn or comprehend the forced standardized way? Just let em fail? These children regularly are not in “special education”(some of those are a joke in their own and full of neglect and abuse) programs cause most aren’t even acknowledged as having disabilities or disorders.

But yes all and all those pesky poor kids just aren’t being worked hard enough lol pretty sure poor children’s existence just in childhood is more work, stress, and responsibility alone than an affluent child’s entire life cycle. Love they never once talked about the quality of education in the classroom being so bad between the poor and affluent it can qualify as segregation, just basically blamed poor people for being lazy, good job capitalism for failing us once again!

why the hell?

you should feel bad for saying this, this article can be helpful for people who has to write a essay about it

This is more of a political rant than it is about homework

I know a teacher who has told his students their homework is to find something they are interested in, pursue it and then come share what they learn. The student responses are quite compelling. One girl taught herself German so she could talk to her grandfather. One boy did a research project on Nelson Mandela because the teacher had mentioned him in class. Another boy, a both on the autism spectrum, fixed his family’s computer. The list goes on. This is fourth grade. I think students are highly motivated to learn, when we step aside and encourage them.

The whole point of homework is to give the students a chance to use the material that they have been presented with in class. If they never have the opportunity to use that information, and discover that it is actually useful, it will be in one ear and out the other. As a science teacher, it is critical that the students are challenged to use the material they have been presented with, which gives them the opportunity to actually think about it rather than regurgitate “facts”. Well designed homework forces the student to think conceptually, as opposed to regurgitation, which is never a pretty sight

Wonderful discussion. and yes, homework helps in learning and building skills in students.

not true it just causes kids to stress

Homework can be both beneficial and unuseful, if you will. There are students who are gifted in all subjects in school and ones with disabilities. Why should the students who are gifted get the lucky break, whereas the people who have disabilities suffer? The people who were born with this “gift” go through school with ease whereas people with disabilities struggle with the work given to them. I speak from experience because I am one of those students: the ones with disabilities. Homework doesn’t benefit “us”, it only tears us down and put us in an abyss of confusion and stress and hopelessness because we can’t learn as fast as others. Or we can’t handle the amount of work given whereas the gifted students go through it with ease. It just brings us down and makes us feel lost; because no mater what, it feels like we are destined to fail. It feels like we weren’t “cut out” for success.

homework does help

here is the thing though, if a child is shoved in the face with a whole ton of homework that isn’t really even considered homework it is assignments, it’s not helpful. the teacher should make homework more of a fun learning experience rather than something that is dreaded

This article was wonderful, I am going to ask my teachers about extra, or at all giving homework.

I agree. Especially when you have homework before an exam. Which is distasteful as you’ll need that time to study. It doesn’t make any sense, nor does us doing homework really matters as It’s just facts thrown at us.

Homework is too severe and is just too much for students, schools need to decrease the amount of homework. When teachers assign homework they forget that the students have other classes that give them the same amount of homework each day. Students need to work on social skills and life skills.

I disagree.

Beyond achievement, proponents of homework argue that it can have many other beneficial effects. They claim it can help students develop good study habits so they are ready to grow as their cognitive capacities mature. It can help students recognize that learning can occur at home as well as at school. Homework can foster independent learning and responsible character traits. And it can give parents an opportunity to see what’s going on at school and let them express positive attitudes toward achievement.

Homework is helpful because homework helps us by teaching us how to learn a specific topic.

As a student myself, I can say that I have almost never gotten the full 9 hours of recommended sleep time, because of homework. (Now I’m writing an essay on it in the middle of the night D=)

I am a 10 year old kid doing a report about “Is homework good or bad” for homework before i was going to do homework is bad but the sources from this site changed my mind!

Homeowkr is god for stusenrs

I agree with hunter because homework can be so stressful especially with this whole covid thing no one has time for homework and every one just wants to get back to there normal lives it is especially stressful when you go on a 2 week vaca 3 weeks into the new school year and and then less then a week after you come back from the vaca you are out for over a month because of covid and you have no way to get the assignment done and turned in

As great as homework is said to be in the is article, I feel like the viewpoint of the students was left out. Every where I go on the internet researching about this topic it almost always has interviews from teachers, professors, and the like. However isn’t that a little biased? Of course teachers are going to be for homework, they’re not the ones that have to stay up past midnight completing the homework from not just one class, but all of them. I just feel like this site is one-sided and you should include what the students of today think of spending four hours every night completing 6-8 classes worth of work.

Are we talking about homework or practice? Those are two very different things and can result in different outcomes.

Homework is a graded assignment. I do not know of research showing the benefits of graded assignments going home.

Practice; however, can be extremely beneficial, especially if there is some sort of feedback (not a grade but feedback). That feedback can come from the teacher, another student or even an automated grading program.

As a former band director, I assigned daily practice. I never once thought it would be appropriate for me to require the students to turn in a recording of their practice for me to grade. Instead, I had in-class assignments/assessments that were graded and directly related to the practice assigned.

I would really like to read articles on “homework” that truly distinguish between the two.

oof i feel bad good luck!

thank you guys for the artical because I have to finish an assingment. yes i did cite it but just thanks

thx for the article guys.

Homework is good

I think homework is helpful AND harmful. Sometimes u can’t get sleep bc of homework but it helps u practice for school too so idk.

I agree with this Article. And does anyone know when this was published. I would like to know.

It was published FEb 19, 2019.

Studies have shown that homework improved student achievement in terms of improved grades, test results, and the likelihood to attend college.

i think homework can help kids but at the same time not help kids

This article is so out of touch with majority of homes it would be laughable if it wasn’t so incredibly sad.

There is no value to homework all it does is add stress to already stressed homes. Parents or adults magically having the time or energy to shepherd kids through homework is dome sort of 1950’s fantasy.

What lala land do these teachers live in?

Homework gives noting to the kid

Homework is Bad

homework is bad.

why do kids even have homework?

Comments are closed.

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Does Homework Improve Academic Achievement?

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impact of homework on academic performance

Educators should be thrilled by these numbers. Pleasing a majority of parents regarding homework and having equal numbers of dissenters shouting "too much!" and "too little!" is about as good as they can hope for.

But opinions cannot tell us whether homework works; only research can, which is why my colleagues and I have conducted a combined analysis of dozens of homework studies to examine whether homework is beneficial and what amount of homework is appropriate for our children.

The homework question is best answered by comparing students who are assigned homework with students assigned no homework but who are similar in other ways. The results of such studies suggest that homework can improve students' scores on the class tests that come at the end of a topic. Students assigned homework in 2nd grade did better on math, 3rd and 4th graders did better on English skills and vocabulary, 5th graders on social studies, 9th through 12th graders on American history, and 12th graders on Shakespeare.

Less authoritative are 12 studies that link the amount of homework to achievement, but control for lots of other factors that might influence this connection. These types of studies, often based on national samples of students, also find a positive link between time on homework and achievement.

Yet other studies simply correlate homework and achievement with no attempt to control for student differences. In 35 such studies, about 77 percent find the link between homework and achievement is positive. Most interesting, though, is these results suggest little or no relationship between homework and achievement for elementary school students.

Why might that be? Younger children have less developed study habits and are less able to tune out distractions at home. Studies also suggest that young students who are struggling in school take more time to complete homework assignments simply because these assignments are more difficult for them.

impact of homework on academic performance

These recommendations are consistent with the conclusions reached by our analysis. Practice assignments do improve scores on class tests at all grade levels. A little amount of homework may help elementary school students build study habits. Homework for junior high students appears to reach the point of diminishing returns after about 90 minutes a night. For high school students, the positive line continues to climb until between 90 minutes and 2½ hours of homework a night, after which returns diminish.

Beyond achievement, proponents of homework argue that it can have many other beneficial effects. They claim it can help students develop good study habits so they are ready to grow as their cognitive capacities mature. It can help students recognize that learning can occur at home as well as at school. Homework can foster independent learning and responsible character traits. And it can give parents an opportunity to see what's going on at school and let them express positive attitudes toward achievement.

Opponents of homework counter that it can also have negative effects. They argue it can lead to boredom with schoolwork, since all activities remain interesting only for so long. Homework can deny students access to leisure activities that also teach important life skills. Parents can get too involved in homework -- pressuring their child and confusing him by using different instructional techniques than the teacher.

My feeling is that homework policies should prescribe amounts of homework consistent with the research evidence, but which also give individual schools and teachers some flexibility to take into account the unique needs and circumstances of their students and families. In general, teachers should avoid either extreme.

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The impact of homework on student achievement

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Ozkan Eren, Daniel J. Henderson, The impact of homework on student achievement, The Econometrics Journal , Volume 11, Issue 2, 1 July 2008, Pages 326–348,

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Utilizing parametric and nonparametric techniques, we assess the role of a heretofore relatively unexplored ‘input’ in the educational process, homework, on academic achievement. Our results indicate that homework is an important determinant of student test scores. Relative to more standard spending related measures, extra homework has a larger and more significant impact on test scores. However, the effects are not uniform across different subpopulations. Specifically, we find additional homework to be most effective for high and low achievers, which is further confirmed by stochastic dominance analysis. Moreover, the parametric estimates of the educational production function overstate the impact of schooling related inputs. In all estimates, the homework coefficient from the parametric model maps to the upper deciles of the nonparametric coefficient distribution and as a by‐product the parametric model understates the percentage of students with negative responses to additional homework.

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Academic Goals, Student Homework Engagement, and Academic Achievement in Elementary School

Antonio valle.

1 Department of Developmental and Educational Psychology, University of A Coruña, A Coruña, Spain

Bibiana Regueiro

José c. núñez.

2 Department of Psychology, University of Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain

Susana Rodríguez

Isabel piñeiro, pedro rosário.

3 Departmento de Psicologia Aplicada, Universidade do Minho, Braga, Portugal

There seems to be a general consensus in the literature that doing homework is beneficial for students. Thus, the current challenge is to examine the process of doing homework to find which variables may help students to complete the homework assigned. To address this goal, a path analysis model was fit. The model hypothesized that the way students engage in homework is explained by the type of academic goals set, and it explains the amount of time spend on homework, the homework time management, and the amount of homework done. Lastly, the amount of homework done is positively related to academic achievement. The model was fit using a sample of 535 Spanish students from the last three courses of elementary school (aged 9 to 13). Findings show that: (a) academic achievement was positively associated with the amount of homework completed, (b) the amount of homework completed was related to the homework time management, (c) homework time management was associated with the approach to homework, (d) and the approach to homework, like the rest of the variables of the model (except for the time spent on homework), was related to the student's academic motivation (i.e., academic goals).


Literature indicates that doing homework regularly is positively associated with students' academic achievement (Zimmerman and Kitsantas, 2005 ). Hence, as expected, the amount of homework done is one of the variables that shows a strong and positive relationship with academic achievement (Cooper et al., 2001 ).

It seems consensual in the literature that doing homework is always beneficial to students, but it is also true that the key for the academic success does not rely on the amount of homework done, but rather on how students engage on homework (Trautwein et al., 2009 ; Núñez et al., 2015c ), and on how homework engagement is related with student motivation (Martin, 2012 ). There is, therefore, a call to analyze the process of homework rather than just the product; that is, to examine the extent to which the quality of the process of doing homework may be relevant to the final outcome.

Trautwein's model of homework

The model by Trautwein et al. ( 2006b ) is rooted in the motivational theories, namely the theory of the expectancy value (Eccles (Parsons) et al., 1983 ; Pintrich and De Groot, 1990 ), and the theory of self-determination (Deci et al., 2002 ), as well as on theories of learning and instruction (Boekaerts, 1999 ). Trautwein and colleagues' model analyzes students' related variables in two blocks, as follows: the motivational (aiming at directing and sustaining the behavior) and the cognitive and behavioral implications (cognitions and behaviors related to the moment of doing homework).These two blocks of variables are rooted in the literature. Motivational variables are related with the theory of expectancy-value by Eccles (Parsons) et al. ( 1983 ), while the variables addressing students' implication are related with the school engagement framework (e.g., Fredricks et al., 2004 ). However, as Eccles and Wang ( 2012 ) stress, both models are interrelated due to the fact that both variables are closely related and show reciprocal relationships.

Student homework engagement: the interplay between cognitive and behavioral components

Engagement is a relatively new construct with great relevance in the field of psychology and instruction (Fredricks et al., 2004 ). Generally considered, engagement has been described as the active implication of the person in an activity (Reeve et al., 2004 ). However, despite the close relation between engagement and motivation, literature clearly differentiates between them (e.g., Martin, 2012 ), stressing engagement as the behavioral manifestation of motivation (Skinner and Pitzer, 2012 ), or arguing that motivation is a precursor of engagement rather than part of it. In sum, motivation relates to the “why” whereas the engagement focuses on the “what” of a particular behavior.

Consistent with this perspective, the current research fitted a model with the variable engagement mediating the relationship between motivation and academic achievement (see Eccles and Wang, 2012 ). Engagement is a complex construct with observational and non-observational aspects (Appleton et al., 2008 ). Some researchers conceptualize engagement with two dimensions—behavior and emotions (e.g., Marks, 2000 )—while others define engagement with four dimensions—academic, behavioral, cognitive, and emotional (e.g., Appleton et al., 2006 ). In the current study, we followed Fredricks' et al. ( 2004 ) conceptualization of engagement as a construct with three dimensions: cognitive (e.g., approaches to learning), behavioral (e.g., student homework behaviors), and emotional (e.g., interest, boredom). For the purpose of the present study, the dimension of emotion was not included in the model (see Figure ​ Figure1 1 ).

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General model hypothesized to explain the relationship between academic motivation, student homework engagement, and academic achievement .

Cognitive homework engagement

In the past few decades, a robust body of research has been addressing the relationship between the way students deal with their learning process and academic outcomes (Marton and Säljö, 1976a , b ; Struyven et al., 2006 ; Rosário et al., 2010a , 2013a ). Marton and Säljö ( 1976a , b ) examined how students studied an academic text and found two ways of approaching the task: a surface and a deep approach. The surface approach is characterized by learning the contents aiming at achieving goals that are extrinsic to the learning content. In contrast, the deep approach is characterized by an intrinsic interest in the task and students are likely to be focused on understanding the learning content, relating it to prior knowledge and to the surrounding environment (Entwistle, 2009 ; Rosário et al., 2010b ). The metaphor “surface vs. deep” constitutes an easy to perceive conceptual framework, both in the classroom setting and in other educational settings (i.e., doing homework at home), and has been shown to be a powerful tool for parents, teachers, and students when conceptualizing the ways students approach school tasks (Entwistle, 1991 ; Rosário et al., 2005 ). The core of the concept of approaches to studying (or to learning) is the metacognitive connection between an intention to approach a task and a strategy to implement it (Rosário et al., 2013b ).

The process of doing homework focuses on what students do when completing homework, that is, how they approach their work and how they manage their personal resources and settings while doing homework. It is likely that students' approaches to homework may influence not only the final homework outcome but also the quality of that process. Students who adopt a deep approach are likely to engage their homework with the intention of deepening their understanding of the knowledge learned in class. In this process, students often relate the homework exercises to prior knowledge and monitor their mastery of the content learned. This process involves intrinsic intention to understand the ideas and the use of strategies to build meaning (Cano et al., 2014 ). In contrast, students who approach homework with a surface approach are likely to do homework with extrinsic motivation (e.g., rewards of their parents, fear of upsetting their teacher). Their goals may target finishing homework as soon as and with the less effort possible to be able to do more interesting activities. Students using this approach are more likely to do homework to fulfill an external obligation (e.g., hand in homework in class and get a grade), than for the benefits for learning.

Behavioral homework engagement

Findings from prior research indicate that the more the implication of students in doing their homework the better the academic achievement (Cooper et al., 2006 ). Following Trautwein et al. ( 2006b ), our conceptualization of student homework engagement includes behaviors related with the amount of homework done, time spent on homework, and homework time management (e.g., concentration). In the present investigation, these three variables were included in the model (see Figure ​ Figure1 1 ).

Extant findings on the relationship between the amount of homework done and academic achievement are in need of further clarification. Some authors argue for a strong and positive relationship (e.g., Cooper et al., 2006 ), while others found that this relationship is higher throughout schooling (Cooper et al., 2001 ; Zimmerman and Kitsantas, 2005 ). Authors explained this last finding arguing that the load of homework assigned by teachers vary throughout schooling, and also that the cognitive competencies of students are likely to vary with age (Muhlenbruck et al., 2000 ). More recently, Núñez et al. ( 2015c ) found that the relationship between these two variables varied as a function of the age of the students enrolled. Particularly, this relationship was found to be negative in elementary school, null in junior high school, and positive in high school.

Moreover, the relationship between the amount of homework done and academic achievement relates, among other factors, with the students' age, the quality of the homework assigned, the type of assessment, and the nature of the feedback provided. For example, some students may always complete their homework and get good grades for doing it, which does not mean that these students learn more (Kohn, 2006 ). In fact, more important than the quantity of the homework done, is the quality of that work (Fernández-Alonso et al., 2014 ).

Another variable included in the model was the time spent on homework. Findings on the relationship between time spent on homework and academic achievement are mixed. Some studies found a positive relationship (Cooper et al., 2001 , 2006 ) while others found a null or a negative one (Trautwein et al., 2006b , 2009 ). In 2009, Dettmers, Trautwein and Lüdtke conducted a study with data from the PISA 2003 (Dettmers et al., 2009 ). Findings on the relationship between the number of hours spent on homework and academic achievement in mathematics show that the students in countries with higher grades spend fewer hours doing homework than students in countries with low academic grades. At the student level, findings showed a negative relationship between time spent on homework and academic achievement in 12 out of 40 countries.

The relationship between the amount of homework done, time dedicated to homework, and academic achievement was hypothesized to be mediated by the homework time management. Xu ( 2007 ) was one of the pioneers examining the management of the time spent on homework. Initially, Xu ( 2007 ) did not find a relationship between time management and academic achievement (spend more time on homework is not equal to use efficient strategies for time management). Latter, Xu ( 2010 ) found a positive relationship between students' grade level, organized environment, and homework time management. More recently, Núñez et al. ( 2015c ) found that effective homework time management affects positively the amount of homework done, and, consequently, academic achievement. This relationship is stronger for elementary students when compared with students in high school.

Academic motivation and student homework engagement relationship

Literature has consistently shown that a deep approach to learning is associated positively with the quality of the learning outcomes (Rosário et al., 2013b ; Cano et al., 2014 ; Vallejo et al., 2014 ). The adoption of a deep approach to homework depends on many factors, but students self-set goals and their motives for doing homework are among the most critical motivational variables when students decide to engage in homework.

Literature on achievement motivation highlights academic goals as an important line of research (Ng, 2008 ). In the educational setting, whereas learning goals focus on the comprehension and mastery of the content, performance goals are more focused on achieving a better performance than their colleagues (Pajares et al., 2000 ; Gaudreau, 2012 ).

Extant literature reports a positive relationship between adopting learning goals and the use of cognitive and self-regulation strategies (Elliot et al., 1999 ; Núñez et al., 2013 ). In fact, students who value learning and show an intention to learn and improve their competences are likely to use deep learning strategies (Suárez et al., 2001 ; Valle et al., 2003a , b , 2015d ), which are aimed at understanding the content in depth. Moreover, these learning-goal oriented students are likely to self-regulate their learning process (Valle et al., 2015a ), put on effort to learn, and assume the control of their learning process (Rosário et al., 2016 ). These students persist much longer when they face difficult and challenging tasks than colleagues pursuing performance goals. The former also use more strategies oriented toward the comprehension of content, are more intrinsically motivated, and feel more enthusiasm about academic work. Some researchers also found positive relationships between learning goals and pro-social behavior (e.g., Inglés et al., 2013 ).

Reviewing the differentiation between learning goals and performance goals, Elliot and colleagues (Elliot and Church, 1997 ; Elliot, 1999 ; Elliot et al., 1999 ) proposed a three-dimensional framework for academic goals. In addition to learning goals, performance goals were differentiated as follows: (a) performance-approach goals, focused on achieving competence with regard to others; and (b) performance-avoidance goals, aimed at avoiding incompetence with regard to others. Various studies have provided empirical support for this distinction within performance goals (e.g., Wolters et al., 1996 ; Middleton and Midgley, 1997 ; Skaalvik, 1997 ; Rodríguez et al., 2001 ; Valle et al., 2006 ). Moreover, some authors proposed a similar differentiation for learning goals (Elliot, 1999 ). The rationale was as follows: learning goals are characterized by high engagement in academic tasks, so an avoidance tendency in such goals should reflect avoidance of this engagement. Hence, students who pursue a work avoidance goal are likely to avoid challenging tasks and to put on effort to do well, only doing the bare minimum to complete the task. In general, learning goals are associated with a large amount of positive results in diverse motivational, cognitive, and achievement outcomes, whereas performance goals have been linked to less adaptive outcomes, or even to negative outcomes (Valle et al., 2009 ).

Aims of this study

Several relationships between motivational, cognitive, and behavioral variables involving self-regulated learning in the classroom have recently been studied (Rosário et al., 2013a ). However, there is a lack of knowledge of the relationships between these variables throughout the process of doing homework.

The principal purpose of this work (see Figure ​ Figure1) 1 ) is to analyze how student homework engagement (cognitive and behavioral) mediates motivation and academic performance. This study aims to provide new information about an issue that is taken for granted, but which, as far as we know, lacks empirical data. The question is: to what extent students acknowledge homework as a good way to acquire competence, improve their skills and performance? Our working hypothesis is that student value homework in this regard. Therefore, we hypothesized that the more students are motivated to learn, the more they will be involved (cognitively and behaviorally) in their homework, and the higher their academic achievement.

To address this goal, we developed a path analysis model (see Figure ​ Figure1) 1 ) in which we hypothesized that: (a) the student's motivational level is significantly related to their cognitive homework engagement (i.e., the approach to studying applied to homework), and their behavioral homework engagement (i.e., amount of time spent and homework time management, and amount of homework completed); (b) student's cognitive and behavioral homework engagement are positively associated with academic achievement; and (c) cognitive and behavioral homework engagement are related (the more deep cognitive engagement, the more time spent and time management, and the more amount of homework is done).


The study enrolled 535 students, aged between 9 and 13 ( M = 10.32, SD = 0.99), of four public schools, from the last three years of the Spanish Elementary Education (4th, 5th, and 6th grade level), of whom 49.3% were boys. By grade, 40.4% ( n = 216) were enrolled in the 4th grade, 35.1% ( n = 188) in the 5th grade, and 24.5% ( n = 131) in the 6th grade.

Learning goals

The level and type of motivation for academic learning was assessed with the Academic Goals Instrument (Núñez et al., 1997 ). Although, this instrument allows differentiating a broad range of academic goals, for the purposes of this work, we only used the subscale of learning goals (i.e., competence and control). The instrument is rated on a 5-point Likert-type scale, with responses ranging from one (not at all interested) to five (absolutely interested in learning and acquiring competence and control in the different subjects). An example item is: “I make an effort in my studies because performing the academic tasks allows me to increase my knowledge.” The reliability of the scale is good (α = 0.87).

Approach to homework

To measure the process of approaching homework, we adapted the Students' Approaches to Learning Inventory (Rosário et al., 2010a , 2013a ), taking into account both the students' age and the homework contexts. This instrument is based on voluminous literature on approaches to learning (e.g., Biggs et al., 2001 ; Rosário et al., 2005 ), and provides information about two ways of approaching homework. For the purpose of this research, we only used the deep approach (e.g., “Before starting homework, I usually decide whether what was taught in class is clear and, if not, I review the lesson before I start”). Students respond to the items on a 5-point Likert-type scale ranging from one (not at all deep approach) to five (completely deep approach). The reliability of the scale is good (α = 0.80).

Time spent on homework, homework time management, and amount of homework completed

To measure these three variables, we used the Homework Survey (e.g., Rosário et al., 2009 ; Núñez et al., 2015a , b ; Valle et al., 2015b , c ). To measure the time spent on homework , students responded to three items (in general, in a typical week, on a typical weekend) with the general formulation, “How much time do you usually spend on homework?,” with the response options 1, <30 min; 2, 30 min to 1 h; 3, 1 h to an hour and a half; 4, 1 h and a half to 2 h; 5, more than 2 h. Homework time management was measured through the responses to three items (in general, in a typical week, on a typical weekend) in which they were asked to indicate how they managed the time normally spent doing homework, using the following scale: 1, I waste it completely (I am constantly distracted by anything); 2, I waste it more than I should; 3, regular; 4, I manage it pretty much; 5, I optimize it completely (I concentrate and until I finish, I don't think about anything else). Finally, the amount of homework completed by students (assigned by teachers) was assessed through responses to an item about the amount of homework usually done, using a 5-point Likert-type scale (1, none; 2, some; 3, one half; 4, almost all; 5, all).

Academic achievement

Assessment of academic achievement was assessed through students' report card grades in Spanish Language, Galician Language, English Language, Knowledge of the Environment, and Mathematics. Average achievement was calculated with the mean grades in these five areas.

Data of the target variables was collected during regular school hours, by research assistants, after obtaining the consent of the school administration and of the teachers and students. Prior to the application of the questionnaires, which took place in a single session, the participants were informed about the goals of the project, and assured that data was confidential and used for research purposes only.

Data analysis

The model was fit with AMOS 18 (Arbuckle, 2009 ). The data were previously analyzed and individual cases presenting a significant number of missing values were eliminated (2.1%), whereas the rest of the missing values were replaced by the mean. Taking into account the analysis of the characteristics of the variables (e.g., skewness and kurtosis in Table ​ Table1), 1 ), we used the maximum likelihood method to fit the model and estimate the values of the parameters.

Means, standard deviations, skewness, kurtosis, and correlation matrix of the target variables .

1. Learning goals
2. Approach to homework0.50
3. Amount of homework done0.42 0.33
4. Time spent on homework−0.01−0.030.10
5. Time management0.45 0.45 0.39 −0.02
6. Academic achievement0.43 0.13 0.34 −0.010.24

A series of goodness-of-fit statistics were used to analyze our model. Beyond chi-square (χ 2 ) and its associated probability ( p ), the information provided by the goodness-of-fit index (GFI) and the adjusted goodness-of-fit index (AGFI; Jöreskog and Sörbom, 1983 ); the comparative fit index (CFI) (Bentler, 1990 ); and the root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA; Browne and Cudeck, 1993 ) was used. According to these authors, the model fits well when GFI and AGFI > 0.90, CFI > 0.95, and RMSEA ≤ 0.05.

Descriptive analysis

The relations between the variables included in the model as well as the descriptive statistics are shown in Table ​ Table1. 1 . All the variables were significantly and positively related, except for the time spent on homework, which was only related to the amount of homework done. According to the value of the means of these variables, students in the last years of elementary school: (a) reported a high level of motivation to learn and mastery; (b) used preferentially a deep approach to homework; (c) did the homework assigned by the teachers most of the times; (d) usually spent about an hour a day on homework; (e) reported to manage their study time effectively; and (f) showed a medium-high level of academic achievement.

Evaluation and re-specification of the initial model

The data obtained indicated that the initial model (see Figure ​ Figure1) 1 ) presented a poor fit to the empirical data: χ 2 = 155.80, df = 8, p < 0.001, GFI = 0.917, AGFI = 0.783, TLI = 0.534, CFI = 0.751, RMSEA = 0.186, 90% CI (0.161, 0.212), p < 0.001. Analysis of the modification indexes revealed the need to include three direct effects initially considered as null, and to eliminate a finally null effect (included in the initial model as significant). The strategy adopted to modify the initial model involved including and estimating the model each time a new effect was included. The final model comprised three effects (academic goals on homework time management, on amount of homework done, and on academic achievement) and the elimination of the initially established effect of the approach to studying on the time spent doing homework. The inclusion or elimination of the effects in the model was determined accounting for their statistical and theoretical significance. The final model resulting from these modifications is shown in Figure ​ Figure2, 2 , with an adequate fit to the empirical data: χ 2 = 12.03, df = 6, p = 0.061, GFI = 0.993, AGFI = 0.974, TLI = 0.975, CFI = 0.990, RMSEA = 0.043, 90% CI (0.000, 0.079), p = 0.567.

An external file that holds a picture, illustration, etc.
Object name is fpsyg-07-00463-g0002.jpg

The results of the fit of the hypothesized model (standardized outcomes): Relations in dashed lines were found to be statistically significant, but this was not established in the initial model .

Assessment of the relationships on the final model

Table ​ Table2 2 presents the data obtained for the relationships considered in the final model (see also Figure ​ Figure2 2 ).

Fit of the hypothesized model (standardized outcomes): final model of student engagement in homework .

Learning goals → Approach to homework0.5360.4970.04013.2480.001
Approach to homework → Time-management0.3500.3030.0497.0930.001
Learning goals → Time-management0.3700.2970.0536.9600.001
Time-management → Amount of homework0.1790.2260.0355.1430.001
Learning goals → Amount of homework0.2700.2740.0456.0540.001
Time spent on homework → Amount of homework0.0670.1040.0242.7680.006
Approach to homework → Amount of homework0.0820.0900.0421.9740.048
Amount of homework → Academic achievement0.3100.2010.0654.7630.004
Learning goals → Academic achievement0.5210.3430.0648.1280.202

The data from Table ​ Table2 2 and Figure ​ Figure2 2 indicates that the majority of the relationships between the variables are consistent with the hypotheses. First, we found a statistically significant association between the learning goals (i.e., competence and control), the approach to homework ( b = 0.50, p < 0.001), two of the variables associated with engagement in homework (the amount of homework done [ b = 0.27, p < 0.001], homework time management [ b = 0.30, p < 0.001]), and academic achievement ( b = 0.34, p < 0.001). These results indicate that the more oriented students are toward learning goals (i.e., competence and control), the deeper the approach to homework, the more homework is completed, the better the homework time management, and the higher the academic achievement.

Second, a statistically significant association between the deep approach and homework time management ( b = 0.30, p < 0.001) and the amount of homework done ( b = 0.09, p < 0.05) was found. These results reflect that the deeper the students' approach to homework, the better the management of the time spent on homework, and the more the homework done. Third, there was a statistically significant association between homework time management, time spent on homework, and the amount of homework done ( b = 0.23, p < 0.001, and b = 0.10, p < 0.01, respectively). These results confirm, as expected, that the more time students spent doing homework and the better students manage their homework time, the more homework they will do. Four, we found a statistically significant relation between the amount of homework done and academic achievement ( b = 0.20, p < 0.001). This indicates that the more homework students complete the better their academic achievement.

In summary, our findings indicate that: (a) academic achievement is positively associated with the amount of homework completed; (b) the amount of homework done is related to homework time management; (c) homework time management is associated with how homework is done (approach to homework); and (d) consistent with the behavior of the variables in the model (except for the time spent on homework), how homework is done (i.e., approach to homework) is explained to a great extent (see total effects in Table ​ Table3) 3 ) by the student's type of academic motivation.

Standardized direct, indirect, and total effects for the final model .

Academic goals0.4970.2970.2740.343
Approach to homework0.3030.0900.000
Time spent on homework0.0000.0000.1040.000
Time management0.0000.2260.000
Amount of homework done0.0000.0000.201
Academic goals0.0000.1500.1460.084
Approach to homework0.0000.0680.032
Time spent on homework0.0000.0000.0000.021
Time management0.0000.0000.046
Amount of homework done0.0000.0000.000
Academic goals0.4970.4470.4200.428
Approach to homework0.3030.1580.032
Time spent on homework0.0000.0000.1040.021
Time management0.0000.2260.046
Amount of homework done0.0000.0000.201

Finally, taking into account both the direct effects (represented in Figure ​ Figure2) 2 ) and the indirect ones (see Table ​ Table3), 3 ), the model explained between 20 and 30% of the variance of the dependent variables (except for the time spent on homework, which is not explained at all): approach to homework (24.7%), time management (26.9%), amount of homework done (24.4%), and academic achievement (21.6%).

Consistent with prior research (e.g., Cooper et al., 2001 ), our findings showed that students' academic achievement in the last years of elementary education is closely related to the amount of homework done. In addition, the present study also confirms the importance of students' effort and commitment to doing homework (Trautwein et al., 2006a , b ), showing that academic achievement is also related with students' desire and interest to learn and improve their skills. Therefore, when teachers assign homework, it is essential to attend to students' typical approach to learning, which is mediated by the motivational profile and by the way students solve the tasks proposed (Hong et al., 2004 ). The results of this investigation suggest that the adoption of learning goals leads to important educational benefits (Meece et al., 2006 ), among which is doing homework.

Importantly, our study shows that the amount of homework done is associated not only with the time spent, but also with the time management. Time spent on homework should not be considered an absolute indicator of the amount of homework done, because students' cognitive skills, motivation, and prior knowledge may significantly affect the time needed to complete the homework assignment (Regueiro et al., 2015 ). For students, managing homework time is a challenge (Corno, 2000 ; Xu, 2008 ), but doing it correctly may have a positive influence on their academic success (Claessens et al., 2007 ), on homework completion (Xu, 2005 ), and on school achievement (Eilam, 2001 ).

Despite, that previous studies reported a positive relationship between the time spent on homework and academic achievement (Cooper et al., 2006 ), the present research shows that time spent on homework is not a relevant predictor of academic achievement. Other studies have also obtained similar results (Trautwein et al., 2009 ; Núñez et al., 2015a ), indicating that time spent on homework is negatively associated to academic achievement, perhaps because spending a lot of time on homework may indicate an inefficient working style and lack of motivation (Núñez et al., 2015a ). Besides, our data indicates that spending more time on homework is positively associated to the amount of homework done.

Although, some studies have found that students who spend more time on homework also tend to report greater commitment to school work (Galloway et al., 2013 ), our findings indicated that spending more time doing homework was not related to a deeper engagement on the task. A possible explanation may be that using a deep approach to school tasks subsumes engaging in homework with the aim of practicing but also to further extend the content learned in class. This approach does not depends on the time spent doing homework, rather on the students' motives for doing homework.

Another important contribution of this study concerns learning-oriented goals—usually associated with positive outcomes in motivational, cognitive, and achievement variables (Pajares et al., 2000 ). Results indicate that the motivation to increase competence and learning is also related to approaching homework deeply and to manage homework efficiently. Consistent with previous findings (Xu, 2005 ), these results provide additional empirical support to time management goals (Pintrich, 2004 ).

There is a robust relationship between learning-oriented goals and a deep approach, and between a deep approach and the amount of homework done. All this indicates that these results are in line with prior research, meaning that the adoption of a deep approach to learning is related with high quality academic achievement (Lindblom-Ylänne and Lonka, 1999 ; Rosário et al., 2013b ).

Educational implications and study limitations

One of the major limitations of this study lies in the type of research design used. We used a cross-sectional design to examine the effects among the variables within a path analysis model. However, to establish a cause-effect relationship a temporal sequence between two variables is needed a requirement that can only be met with longitudinal designs. Future studies should consider address this limitation.

Despite the above limitation, our results can be considered relevant and show important educational implications. It is essential for teachers and school administrators to be sensitized about the effects of teachers' homework follow-up practices on students' homework engagement (Rosário et al., 2015 ), and of these variables in students' school engagement and academic success. Likewise, research on students' learning should be undertaken from the perspective of the learners to understand how students use their knowledge and skills to do homework and to solve problems posed therein. On the other hand, research should examine in-depth the use of learning strategies during homework, as well as how students' motivations at an early age may foster homework completion and increase the quality of school outcomes. For this last purpose, teachers should pay attention not only to the acquisition of curricular content but also to the development of the appropriate thinking skills and self-regulated learning strategies (Rosário et al., 2010b ; Núñez et al., 2013 ). Finally, the amount of homework done and its positive relationship with academic achievement should be considered as a final outcome of a process rooted on a comprehensive and meaningful learning. Students motivated to learn are likely to approach homework deeply and manage homework time efficaciously. As a result, they tend to do more homework and outperform. In sum, is doing homework a good way to acquire competence, improve skills, and outperform? Our data suggest a positive answer.

Author contributions

AV and BR Collect data, data analysis, writing the paper. JN and PR data analysis, writing the paper. SR and IP writing the paper.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.


This work was developed through the funding of the research project EDU2013-44062-P, of the State Plan of Scientific and Technical Research and Innovation 2013-2016 (MINECO) and to the financing received by one of the authors in the FPU program of the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sport.

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  • DOI: 10.31703/gssr.2020(v-i).59
  • Corpus ID: 226026421

Impact of Homework on the Student Academic Performance at Secondary School Level

  • Muhammad Ahsan ul Haq , A. Shakil , M. Din
  • Published 30 March 2020

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The effects of assigning homework on the achievement of students at the primary school level, exploring the impact of homework assignments on achievement and attitudes in science education.

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Relationship between emotionally stable college principals and performance of their teachers through discipline and regularity in classroom, pengaruh self regulated learning dan intensitas pemberian tugas terhadap hasil belajar akuntansi dengan pemediasi academic stress, 39 references, homework influence on academic performance. a study of iberoamerican students of primary education, homework and student math achievement in junior high schools, homework involvement and academic achievement of native and immigrant students, homework and attainment in primary schools, the relationship between homework time and achievement is not universal: evidence from multilevel analyses in 40 countries, chameleon effects in homework research: the homework-achievement association depends on the measures used and the level of analysis chosen, homework and students' achievement in math and science: a 30-year meta-analysis, 1986–2015, nonacademic effects of homework in privileged, high-performing high schools, dealing with homework in english language teaching: a case of dadeldhura district, relationships among attitudes about homework, amount of homework assigned and completed, and student achievement, related papers.

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Impact of Homework on the Student Academic Performance at Secondary School Level

Profile image of Dr. Anila Fatima Shakil

Volume V Issue I

Homework is the means by which the relationship between home and school is demonstrated and developed, leading to more consistent progress in all aspects of school life. The current research was carried out in Gilgit Baltistan to find out the impact of homework on the academic performance of students at secondary level. The research was observed by teachers of Gilgit Baltistan public schools while 100 teachers were chosen by a random sampling technique as a sample. Questionnaires were as a research instrument. The study found that homework impacts learning for learners, its impact differs with the age of students, and it plays an important role in student achievement. The study proposed that homework should be purposeful, i.e. it should include the introduction of new content, the practise of skills, the creation of any data and the ability for students to explore topics of their own interest.

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impact of homework on academic performance


School homework has been synonymous with students- life in Chinese national type primary schools in Malaysia. Although many reports in the press claimed that students were burdened with too much of it, homework continues to be a common practice in national type schools that is believed to contribute to academic achievement. This study is conducted to identify the relationship between the burden of school homework and academic achievement among pupils in Chinese National Type Primary School in the state of Perak, Malaysia. A total of 284 students (142 from urban and 142 from rural) respectively were chosen as participants in this study. Variables of gender and location (urban/rural areas) has shown significant difference in student academic achievement. Female Chinese student from rural areas showed a higher mean score than males from urban area. Therefore, the Chinese language teachers should give appropriate and relevant homework to primary school students to achieve good academic ...

Shumaila Hameed

Vahit Ağa Yıldız

The study aimed to scrutinize the viewpoints of primary school teachers, students, and parents about homework in various parameters such as types, frequency, subject and functions of homework. In the study, the case study design based on the qualitative research method, was utilized. The participants comprised 32 teachers, 36 fourth-grade students and 28 parents from different primary schools in Erzurum, in the east of Turkey. The data were collected via semi-structured interview forms, and were processed using the content analysis method. The findings of the study released that although all participant students, most teachers and parents said homework increased the academic success, a closer look in to their responses to different interview questions illustrated that all of the participant groups also had some negative opinions about the homework in primary schools. The students reported that the most homework covered problem-solving tasks, and the least was practice with musical i...

Social Psychology of Education

Jim LIndsay

Four explanations were tested for why the correlation between homework and achievement is weaker in elementary school than secondary school. Eighty-two teachers answered questions about their homework practices, and their responses were related to their students&#x27; achievement test scores. No evidence was found to suggest the weaker correlation in elementary school associated with a restricted variation in amounts of homework in early grades nor that teachers assigned more homework to poor-performing classes. Evidence did suggest that teachers in early grades assigned homework more often to develop young students&#x27; management of time, a skill rarely measured on standardized achievement tests. Also consistent with this hypothesis, elementary school teachers were more likely to use homework to review class material and to go over homework in class, while secondary school teachers more often used homework to prepare for and enrich class lessons. Finally, there was weak evidence ...

International Journal of Enhanced Research in Educational Development

Sharath Kumar C R

Continuous comprehensive evaluation has become a boon to students in many ways as it has provided them with various opportunities for overall development of students. The student's attitude towards homework yield substantial incremental validity in predicting academic performance in terms of continuous comprehensive evaluation. Homework is the work assigned for students by the concerned teacher where the child study the concept well and then able to complete the assigned work. This helps the students to understand the concept better which in turn develops confidence and hence motivated towards a subject. It increases the level of knowledge and improves overall abilities of students. The present study was conducted to know the student's attitude towards homework among secondary level. Samples of 800 students were selected from Mysuru district including SBSE and ICSE board students of 400 each. After all the data analysis and interpretation it is found that 37.5% of the students show average favorable attitude towards homework whereas 15% of the students are having highly favorable and 0% of the students is found to have highly unfavorable attitude towards homework.

Tichaona Mapolisa

Abstract: The aim of this study was to assess how teachers in the primary schools of Bubi District were using homework to augment their classroom activities. The population comprised of all the 78 primary schools in the district with a teacher population of 994 teachers. Random sampling was employed to select a sample of 200 teachers and 20 heads of schools. The study employed the quantitative methodology and adopted the descriptive survey design. All the data were gathered by use of a questionnaire which had both open-ended and close-ended questions. The study revealed that primary schools in Bubi District were not assigning adequate homework activities to pupils as expected. Pupils also faced problems of resources to effectively do their homework activities. The study recommends that teachers should assign homework regularly so that pupils understand that it is as important as work they do in the classroom. The study also recommends that heads of schools should encourage to provide resources for use by their children when they are doing homework. Keywords: Homework, primary school, district, assessment and effectiveness.

Adem Turanlı

Atila Yıldırım

Ellián Tuero

The goal of this research was to study the weight of student variables related to homework (intrinsic homework motivation, perceived homework instrumentality, homework attitude, time spent on homework, and homework time management) and context (teacher feedback on homework and parental homework support) in the prediction of approaches to homework. 535 students of the last three courses of primary education participated in the study. Data were analyzed with hierarchical regression models and path analysis. The results obtained suggest that students&rsquo; homework engagement (high or low) is related to students&acute; level of intrinsic motivation and positive attitude towards homework. Furthermore, it was also observed that students who manage their homework time well (and not necessarily those who spend more time) are more likely to show the deepest approach to homework. Parental support and teacher feedback on homework affect student homework engagement through their effect on the...

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Fatih Mehmet Cigerci

Thoidis, I. & Chaniotakis, N. (2010). Homework in Elementary School: Prac-tices and Perceptions of Teachers and Students. Proceedings of ICERI 2010 Conference. 15th-17th November 2010, Madrid, Spain (3677-368


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Bibliometrics & citations, view options, recommendations, temporal analysis for dropout prediction using self-regulated learning strategies in self-paced moocs.

MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) have usually high dropout rates. Many articles have proposed predictive models in order to early detect learners at risk to alleviate this issue. Nevertheless, existing models do not consider complex ...

  • Event-based self-regulated learning (SRL) strategies are good predictors of dropout.

How students view online knowledge: Epistemic beliefs, self-regulated learning and academic misconduct

The use of the internet in education has been greatly encouraged by the COVID-19 epidemic. Studying students' internet-specific epistemic beliefs (ISEB) and possible correlates would benefit online teaching and learning. However, ...

  • Male students are more likely to engage in e-AD than female students.
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Interaction during online classes fosters engagement with learning and self-directed study both in the first and second years of the COVID-19 pandemic

Maintaining students’ learning engagement was a challenge in emergency online education during the pandemic. In this study, we investigated the predictors (social interaction) and outcomes (self-directed study) of engagement in online ...

  • Engagement with online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic was investigated.


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  • Research into trans medicine has been manipulated

Court documents offer a window into how this happens

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I N APRIL HILARY CASS , a British paediatrician, published her review of gender-identity services for children and young people, commissioned by NHS England. It cast doubt on the evidence base for youth gender medicine. This prompted the World Professional Association for Transgender Health ( WPATH ), the leading professional organisation for the doctors and practitioners who provide services to trans people, to release a blistering rejoinder. WPATH said that its own guidelines were sturdier, in part because they were “based on far more systematic reviews”.

Systematic reviews should evaluate the evidence for a given medical question in a careful, rigorous manner. Such efforts are particularly important at the moment, given the feverish state of the American debate on youth gender medicine, which is soon to culminate in a Supreme Court case challenging a ban in Tennessee. The case turns, in part, on questions of evidence and expert authority.

Court documents recently released as part of the discovery process in a case involving youth gender medicine in Alabama reveal that WPATH ’s claim was built on shaky foundations. The documents show that the organisation’s leaders interfered with the production of systematic reviews that it had commissioned from the Johns Hopkins University Evidence-Based Practice Centre ( EPC ) in 2018.

From early on in the contract negotiations, WPATH expressed a desire to control the results of the Hopkins team’s work. In December 2017, for example, Donna Kelly, an executive director at WPATH , told Karen Robinson, the EPC ’s director, that the WPATH board felt the EPC researchers “cannot publish their findings independently”. A couple of weeks later, Ms Kelly emphasised that, “the [ WPATH ] board wants it to be clear that the data cannot be used without WPATH approval”.

Ms Robinson saw this as an attempt to exert undue influence over what was supposed to be an independent process. John Ioannidis of Stanford University, who co-authored guidelines for systematic reviews, says that if sponsors interfere or are allowed to veto results, this can lead to either biased summaries or suppression of unfavourable evidence. Ms Robinson sought to avoid such an outcome. “In general, my understanding is that the university will not sign off on a contract that allows a sponsor to stop an academic publication,” she wrote to Ms Kelly.

Months later, with the issue still apparently unresolved, Ms Robinson adopted a sterner tone. She noted in an email in March 2018 that, “Hopkins as an academic institution, and I as a faculty member therein, will not sign something that limits academic freedom in this manner,” nor “language that goes against current standards in systematic reviews and in guideline development”.

Not to reason XY

Eventually WPATH relented, and in May 2018 Ms Robinson signed a contract granting WPATH power to review and offer feedback on her team’s work, but not to meddle in any substantive way. After wpath leaders saw two manuscripts submitted for review in July 2020, however, the parties’ disagreements flared up again. In August the WPATH executive committee wrote to Ms Robinson that WPATH had “many concerns” about these papers, and that it was implementing a new policy in which WPATH would have authority to influence the EPC team’s output—including the power to nip papers in the bud on the basis of their conclusions.

Ms Robinson protested that the new policy did not reflect the contract she had signed and violated basic principles of unfettered scientific inquiry she had emphasised repeatedly in her dealings with WPATH . The Hopkins team published only one paper after WPATH implemented its new policy: a 2021 meta-analysis on the effects of hormone therapy on transgender people. Among the recently released court documents is a WPATH checklist confirming that an individual from WPATH was involved “in the design, drafting of the article and final approval of [that] article”. (The article itself explicitly claims the opposite.) Now, more than six years after signing the agreement, the EPC team does not appear to have published anything else, despite having provided WPATH with the material for six systematic reviews, according to the documents.

No one at WPATH or Johns Hopkins has responded to multiple inquiries, so there are still gaps in this timeline. But an email in October 2020 from WPATH figures, including its incoming president at the time, Walter Bouman, to the working group on guidelines, made clear what sort of science WPATH did (and did not) want published. Research must be “thoroughly scrutinised and reviewed to ensure that publication does not negatively affect the provision of transgender health care in the broadest sense,” it stated. Mr Bouman and one other coauthor of that email have been named to a World Health Organisation advisory board tasked with developing best practices for transgender medicine.

Another document recently unsealed shows that Rachel Levine, a transwoman who is assistant secretary for health, succeeded in pressing wpath to remove minimum ages for the treatment of children from its 2022 standards of care. Dr Levine’s office has not commented. Questions remain unanswered, but none of this helps WPATH ’s claim to be an organisation that bases its recommendations on science. ■

Stay on top of American politics with  The US in brief , our daily newsletter with fast analysis of the most important electoral stories, and  Checks and Balance , a weekly note from our Lexington columnist that examines the state of American democracy and the issues that matter to voters.

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This article appeared in the United States section of the print edition under the headline “Marking their own homework”

United States June 29th 2024

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