Student learning in microeconomics : an evaluated experimental course utilizing a mandatory study guide.

No Thumbnail Available
Fulks, Logan
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Middle Tennessee State University
This study sought to determine the relative value of an economics study guide in the mastery of microeconomics when used in conjunction with the traditional classroom lecture. The research was conducted during the 1984 winter quarter at David Lipscomb College, Nashville, Tennessee. Two classes in principles of microeconomics were used in the study involving 84 students who were primarily classified as sophomores. One class acted as the control group and the other as the experimental group. The study guide was prepared by the writer and consisted of thirteen chapters. Each chapter contained learning objectives, chapter overview, and a series of questions to test the student's understanding of the subject material. The study guide did not contain the answers to the questions, rather the questions were collected, graded, corrected, and then returned to the students. Improvement in the student's knowledge of economics was measured by administering a pretest and posttest. The test instrument was the "Introductory Microeconomics CLEP Subject Examination 3 CCY" provided by the Educational Testing Service, Princeton, New Jersey.
In addition to test data to measure the increased student cognitive learning level, other variables such as age, sex, grade point average, American Colleges Test scores, college hours completed, and employment status were examined for their effect. Comparisons were made between test scores of the control and experimental group, between male/female scores of both groups, and of male and female scores of the total sample.
No significant difference was found in the cognitive learning rate between those students who used a study guide and those who did not. There was an indication that the female student entered and left the course at a lower level of economic understanding than did the male, although registering as much improvement as the male. Of the variables, only college hours completed appeared to explain differences in the level of performance among the students.