Repetition and Spaced Review in Programed Instruction

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Report Number: AMRL TR 64-128
Author(s): Reynolds, James H., Glaser, Robert
Corporate Author(s): University of Pittsburgh
Laboratory: Behavioral Sciences Laboratory
Date of Publication: 1964-12
Pages: 36
Contract: AF 33(616)-7175
DoD Project: 1710
DoD Task: 171007
Identifier: AD0612738

The effects of repetition and spaced review in programed instruction were studied. Experiments 1 and 2 covered a one-semester course in General Science at the Junior High School level. In Experiment 3, a 1280-frame portion of the total course was used. In Experiments 1 and 2, comparisons were made among (a) a conventional course, (b) a regular linear version of the program, and (c) a spiral version of the program. The results indicate that the programed course was at least as effective as the conventional instruction in terms of both learning and retention after 15 weeks. The linear program was superior to conventional instruction on some measures. The spiral program offered few, if any, advantages over the regular linear program. Experiment 3 allowed a more precise evaluation of the separate effects of repetition and spaced review. Spaced review produced significant increases in learning which persisted, and even increased, through a 3-week retention interval. Repetition did not produce increased learning or retention. The general conclusions are: (a) repetition of instructional materials above the usual level in a linear program is not beneficial; (b) spaced review is potentially beneficial; and (c) some techniques of obtaining spaced review, eg, spiral programing, may offer disadvantages that equal or outweigh the potential advantages of spaced review.

Provenance: RAF Centre of Aviation Medicine

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