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Introduction to Psychology

Individual Assignment: Experimental Design

Question 2:
Would class schedule affect students’ performance?

Name: WAN Ying Chiu


Student No.: 17158329A
Class: A01
Tutorial Group: A
Subject lecturer: Ms Candace CHAN
A. Introduction
Background of study:
More sounds from the society in Hong Kong criticize that students’ performance in
academic board is weakened year by year. In fact, students’ academic performance
may not be referred solely to their abilities anymore. According to Van Etten,
Pressley, McInerney and Liem (2008), “academic-related factors (i.e., course-,
examination-, and assignment-related characteristics, reward, and feedback)” may
have significant influence on students’ motivation of study. The implication is course
arrangements can remarkably affect students’ academic performance. Considering
that, I am going to conduct a three-day experiment to test whether students’
performance and class schedule have cause-and-effect relationships.
Design of experiment:
The hypothesis of experiment is senior students in a band 1 secondary school who
have intense class schedule tend to have lower grades in daily summarizing quiz of all
subjects.
The independent variable is class schedule. The operational definition of independent
variable is the intensity of the eight-sectioned class schedule, i.e. high intensity
(having no breaks) and normal intensity (having 15minutes of break after each section
of class).
The dependent variable is grades in the daily summarizing quiz of all subjects. The
operational definition of dependent variable is the grading from Grade A to F, i.e.
Grade A(100-86marks), Grade B(85-71marks), Grade C(70-56marks), Grade D(55-
41marks), Grade E(40-25marks), Grade F(24-0marks).

B. Sampling method and problem solving for the sample of experiment


For sampling method, supposedly there are TWO classes in each form four, form five
and form six of the same school. A total of 30 students will be drawn, i.e. ten students
each form and half of them will be chosen in each class.
For problem solving, in order to minimize the effects of confounding variables like
students’ personality, their abilities etc. Random assignment is needed as using the
Random Number Generator (RNG) machine for grouping.

C. Procedures of experiment (Repeating in three days)


Firstly, each of the chosen student will be assigned a number and drawn by using the
RNG machine to divide into experimental and control groups, 15 students each.
Secondly, experimental group will have the high intensity class schedule (no breaks)
and the control group will have the normal intensity class schedule (15minutes breaks
for each section).
Thirdly, after attending all the teaching sections, students of experimental group and
control group will take the same quiz about all subjects spoken and taught in the same
day.
Fourthly, students’ quiz will be marked and graded in terms of the grading from Grade
A to F. Then the grade will be counted as Grade A equals five marks, Grade B equals
four marks, Grade C equals three marks, Grade D equals two marks, Grade E equals
one mark, Grade F equals zero marks.
Lastly, results will be compared using the accumulative mark concept that the total
mark of students will be divided by the number of three (three quiz in total) for
calculating the average grades.

D. Conclusion of experiment
Students who have intense class schedule tend to have inferior performance in quiz.
Because of the collateral effects of intense class schedule such as fatigue, lack of
revising time etc., students cannot perform their best in quiz. Therefore, class
schedule is vital for better learning. (528 words)
Reference:
1.Van Etten, S., Pressley, M., McInerney, D., & Liem, A. (2008). College seniors'
theory of their academic motivation [Abstract]. College Seniors' Theory of Their
Academic Motivation,100(No.4), 812-812.