A Meta-Analytic Review of the Effect on Learning of the Interaction between Prior Achievement and Instructional Support

  • Whitener E
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Abstract

Aptitude-treatment interaction research has been plagued by conceptual and methodological problems that are evidenced in inconsistent results and unreplicated studies. These problems can be addressed, in part, by using meta-analytic techniques. These techniques were used in this study to test the effect of the interaction of prior achievement with instructional support on learning. This aptitude-treatment interaction was tested by assessing how the learning of subjects with different levels of prior achievement is effected by providing organizational and structuring instructional support as opposed to learner-controlled or self-paced instructional support. The results reveal an interaction that is consistent with the interpretation that there are greater differences in learning achievement between subjects with high prior achievement and subjects with low prior achievement when structuring and organizing support are provided and smaller differences between these subjects when instruction is self-paced. Although this study indicates that differences in achievement levels can be reduced through instructional treatment, further research is needed to evaluate other effects, such as total and subgroup mean achievement.

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Authors

  • Ellen M Whitener

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