Questions for “You should guess answers to your homework before searching online”

a young woman doing online homework

When you don’t know the answer to a homework question, what do you do? New research suggests you should guess. Even if you get it wrong, thinking about the question on your own is better for learning than looking up the right answer.

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To accompany “You should guess answers to your homework before searching online


Before Reading:

1. When you’re doing homework, how often do you look for an answer online instead of puzzling through what you’ve learned or going back to your notes?

2. What are your three preferred ways of studying for a test?

During Reading:

1.  Why does Arnold Glass argue that it doesn’t help to find and copy the correct answers to homework questions?

2.  How does Glass usually prepare his students for upcoming exams?

3.  What did he see in exam grades that suggested something was changing in the way his students were studying?

4.  According to this story, what is the “testing effect”?

5.  Was there a big difference in exam scores between students who used online help and those who didn’t?

6.  One take home message, says Sean Kang, is that teachers should probably abandon use of closed-book exams? What would he replace them with?

After Reading:

1.  If you use online sites to help with homework, why do you use them (be honest)? How do they help you (what advantages do they offer over reviewing readings and notes)? If you don’t use the internet for help, how do you find answers to questions that perplex you?

2.  When you do research online (for homework or anything else), how do you decide which sites to trust? Name three things you look for in a trustworthy site. If you don’t know, there are plenty of guidelines for help. For instance, Science News for Students offers many.