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ERIC Number: EJ1064430
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 27
ISSN: EISSN-1527-9316
The Effects of an Active Learning Strategy on Students' Attitudes and Students' Performances in Introductory Sociology Classes
Killian, Mark; Bastas, Hara
Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, v15 n3 p53-67 Jun 2015
Relevant in many academic contexts, recent scholarship in sociology has challenged departments to improve the public face of the discipline through introductory classes. However, this scholarship has not addressed how departments can improve the discipline's public face while maintaining student performance. It is one thing to create an engaging introductory class; it is another to create an engaging introductory class that ensures student learning. As previous literature has highlighted, one way to achieve the latter is to implement active learning strategies. In this article we examine the effects of Team-Based Learning (TBL), an active-learning strategy, on students' attitudes toward sociology (e.g. the public face of the discipline) as well as students' performances. Using a static-group comparison design, scores on final exams and an attitude survey were compared between two TBL classes and two classes that employed lecture-based learning (LBL) at a branch campus of a large mid-western university (n = 74). Results from t-tests of independent samples revealed that, as opposed to students in LBL classes, students in TBL classes have much more positive attitudes toward the discipline while demonstrating equivalent performances. Although our research has limitations, the findings indicate that instructors of introductory classes can employ active learning strategies to improve the public face of their discipline while ensuring student learning.
Indiana University. 755 West Michigan Street UL 1180D, Indianapolis, IN 46202. Tel: 317-274-5647; Fax: 317-278-2360; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Tests/Questionnaires; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A