The effects of two-column notes on science assessment scores

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Montana State University - Bozeman, Graduate School


This project examined the effects of two-column, teacher-guided notes on student assessment scores. It also measured the value that students placed on notes and if that value changed as study time and assessment results increased. The fundamental idea was that using notes as an organized study tool would improve both test scores and the value placed on notes. Two high school science classes were used to conduct this study. All procedures and routines were kept similar between the two classes with the exception of one class using the two-column, teacher-guided note style. Students were led through four units of instruction and given quizzes, and pre and post unit tests. All assessments were in direct correlation with the material covered in the notes regardless of the note style used for each class. After each quiz and unit test students were asked to take surveys to share their opinions on the helpfulness of the notes. The surveys also measured the amount of study time each student used to prepare for assessments. Calculating the improvement on assessments for each student showed that there was not a strong correlation between the two-column note style and unit assessment scores. Quiz scores throughout the four units were eight percent higher for the Implementation Class and showed that the two-column notes helped keep students current on the unit content. A final survey determined that student motivation and lower semester goals had a significant impact on student performance and preparation for assessments.




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