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Citation:Van Voorhis, F. L. (2000). The effects of interactive (TIPS) homework on family involvement and science achievement of middle grade students. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, University of Florida.

This study investigates the effects of Teachers Involve Parents in Schoolwork (TIPS) interactive and homework assignments on family involvement and student achievement in science. The students doing TIPS interactive homework earned significantly higher science report card grades than students doing non-interactive homework, after controlling for background variables, teacher effects, and percent of homework returned. TIPS also increased family involvement in science homework. However, the effects of that involvement did not carry over to other subject areas such as language arts or math, which were not using the interactive homework assignments. This study showed that well-designed interactive homework assignments in science helped students practice skills, prepare for the next class, participate in learning activities, develop personal responsibility for homework, promote parent-child relations, development of parent-teacher communication, and fulfill policy directives for administrators. Ten classes of 6th and 8th grade students participated in the study. Six classes completed interactive TIPS assignments and four classes completed non-interactive assignments that had the same content and questions as the TIPS assignments. All participants came from a diverse body of students in a public middle school in Baltimore, Maryland. It included a variety of measures and a survey of parent and child. Ordinary least squares regression, bivariate correlation, and mean comparisons by group were used to analyze the data. The researcher reminds readers that while the study indicates promising potential for interactive homework programs, it was conducted for only 18 weeks and standardized achievement tests in science were not available at the end of the study period. Therefore, it only included a pre-test. The researcher conducted no classroom observations of teacher instruction; therefore, there are no measures of teacher implementation in the study. Similarly, there were no measures for the quality of homework interaction at home. All students completed the same homework assignments and there was no adaptation by class ability groupings. The study did not examine the effects of teacher and parent variations in carrying out the interactive homework assignments.

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