About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 1644-1648
Publication year: 2013
ISBN: 978-84-616-2661-8
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 7th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 4-5 March, 2013
Location: Valencia, Spain

MINOR CHANGES WITH MAJOR RESULTS: IMPROVING STUDENT MOTIVATION AND PERFORMANCE IN AN ONLINE ART HISTORY SURVEY

H. McCune Bruhn

The Pennsylvania State University (UNITED STATES)
Art History 111 Online is a well-established e-Learning course at the Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) that has been offered continuously, three semesters per year, since its debut in Spring 2009. I developed the original course with the e-Learning Institute at Penn State and have taught it every semester that it has been available. In Fall 2011, I became aware of certain problems: poor motivation for art history among some students, a widespread attitude that art history was too demanding a subject, ineffective note-taking skills, and consequently, unsatisfactory student performance. I was also dismayed to find that many students weren’t attempting bonus questions on the exams. Each week, I received multiple email complaints about the difficulty of the course—the very same course that had received overwhelmingly positive student feedback in previous semesters. I decided, therefore, to enhance the course, reworking my introductory course materials, adding immediate feedback to quizzes for incorrect answers, and incorporating new note-taking resources. The changes required approximately seven full days of work on my part, and several hours of processing time on the streaming videos for the e-Learning Institute. The results of these relatively minor changes were the near elimination of email complaints and major improvements in student performance, particularly on quizzes and on bonus questions for both quizzes and exams. Comparing the fifteen-week semesters of Fall 2011 and Spring 2012, after my modifications, quiz scores rose by 2.6%, quiz bonus scores rose by 6.4%, and scores on the midterm and final essay exams rose by 7.2% and 1.3% respectively. The most dramatic improvement was on the bonus questions for the midterm exam: not only did the number of students attempting the bonus increase by 24%, but the score on the midterm bonus increased by just over 30%. The overall difference in final grades was 3%, the difference between a B+ and an A- in our grading system.

I will discuss the implementation and outcomes of my minor course changes in detail, and also suggest ways in which my colleagues in other fields might be able to implement similar changes in their courses. By the time that INTED 2013 meets in Valencia, I will have finished a third semester with these improvements in place, which means that I will be able to offer broader comparisons that utilize data from multiple semesters.
@InProceedings{MCCUNEBRUHN2013MIN,
author = {McCune Bruhn, H.},
title = {MINOR CHANGES WITH MAJOR RESULTS: IMPROVING STUDENT MOTIVATION AND PERFORMANCE IN AN ONLINE ART HISTORY SURVEY},
series = {7th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2013 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-616-2661-8},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {4-5 March, 2013},
year = {2013},
pages = {1644-1648}}
TY - CONF
AU - H. McCune Bruhn
TI - MINOR CHANGES WITH MAJOR RESULTS: IMPROVING STUDENT MOTIVATION AND PERFORMANCE IN AN ONLINE ART HISTORY SURVEY
SN - 978-84-616-2661-8/2340-1079
PY - 2013
Y1 - 4-5 March, 2013
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 7th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2013 Proceedings
SP - 1644
EP - 1648
ER -
H. McCune Bruhn (2013) MINOR CHANGES WITH MAJOR RESULTS: IMPROVING STUDENT MOTIVATION AND PERFORMANCE IN AN ONLINE ART HISTORY SURVEY, INTED2013 Proceedings, pp. 1644-1648.
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