In 1990, a study was conducted at Fullerton College (FC), a large suburban community college in Southern California, to determine if the use of classroom research by part-time faculty would stimulate greater involvement in learning and increase the course completion rate of adult learners in evening classes. A group of 16 part-time faculty underwent a series of workshops and meetings both before and during the semester in which they conducted classroom research in order to become familiar with research procedures and to learn new skills in the effective use of classroom assessment techniques. At the beginning of the study, participants were asked to provide grade distributions and course withdrawal information for their spring 1990 classes. Similar data was requested for the fall 1990 class at the conclusion of the fall semester. About 4 weeks into the fall 1990 semester, faculty were asked to complete a survey about the differences between their fall 1990 class and the previous semester's class. In addition, a short survey was completed by students in classes in which classroom assessment techniques were used. Analysis of the data revealed that the course completion rate was significantly higher in the semester in which classroom assessment techniques were used. Results of the semester-end student survey indicated that classroom assessment increased students' sense of involvement in the class, reduced anxieties about asking questions, and effectively met the needs of the adult learners. Appendixes provide the original project proposal, memos and agendas, a final participant list, reporting instructions and forms, a summary of quantitative data, notes from classroom research group meetings, faculty comments, a summary of classroom assessment techniques used by faculty, and student survey responses. (JMC)
1 - Available on microfiche
Fullerton Coll., CA.
State Univ. of New York, Saratoga Springs. Empire State Coll.