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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 21 (2016) pp 81-84

Directed Learner-Generated Study Aids as a Tool to Improve Organic Chemistry Outcomes for Low-Performing Students

Meghan E Yacuzzo, Jeremy Jordan, Consuelo Arellano§, Maria T. Gallardo-Williams*,†

Department of Chemistry, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695,; Department of Materials Science Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695; §Department of Statistics, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695
Received January 12, 2016. Accepted March 2, 2016.

Published: 22 April 2016

Abstract. This study examines the use of learner-generated study aids using a scaffold provided by the instructor in an organic chemistry introductory course and how this intervention is related to student performance in the classroom. Two different sections of the same course with the same instructor were studied: both sections were encouraged to create worksheets to summarize class concepts; however, only one section was allowed to use their worksheets on tests. It was observed that providing students with this incentive to complete worksheets and use them as study aids drove participation and a deeper understanding of the material, which led to higher final exam scores, most significantly when comparing the bottom quartiles across the two sections observed in the study. Results from this work indicate that the involvement of students in the generation of non-disposable assignments can improve class outcomes, in particular for low-performing students.

Key Words: In the Classroom; organic chemistry; learner-generated content; study aids; non-disposable assignments

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