Research Monograph

Effects of Small-Group Learning on Undergraduates in Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology: A Meta-Analysis  

Leonard Springer, Mary Elizabeth Stanne, and Samuel S. Donovan


Recent calls for instructional innovation in undergraduate science, mathematics, engineering, and technology (SMET) courses and programs highlight the need for a solid foundation of education research at the undergraduate level on which to base policy and practice. We report herein the results of a meta-analysis that integrates research on undergraduate SMET education since 1980. The meta-analysis demonstrates that various forms of small-group learning are effective in promoting greater academic achievement, more favorable attitudes toward learning, and increased persistence through SMET courses and programs. The magnitude of the effects reported in this study exceeds most findings in comparable reviews of research on educational innovations and supports more widespread implementation of small-group learning in undergraduate SMET.

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National Institute for Science Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison
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Last Updated:  May 05, 2003