Recently, a mentee approached Faculty Mentor Andre Freeman about how to increase student completion and engagement with online homework. Freeman posed the concern to other Faculty Mentors across the country. The following is a shortlist of strategies that some of our Faculty Mentors and our staff recommend for increasing online homework engagement and completion. We hope they’re helpful to you!

Andre Freeman, Capital Community College:

Discuss TIH or PNL/OCE questions and solutions at the beginning of class and highlight the connection between the in-class and online materials.

Maria Alzugaray & Bridget Dart, SUNY Suffolk Community College:

At Suffolk we are now using the online PNL/OCE grade in Quantway to contribute up to 20 points on each quiz and exam. In the end it makes the online work about 14-15% of the overall grade but the students feel the impact in quiz and exam scores.

There is no separate weighted category. We have noticed that if it’s a separate category students don’t feel the consequences of not doing homework early enough. As soon as they see on quiz 1 that their grade is lower than they want because of lost homework points, they start doing more homework.

The OCE/PNL is 20 points and the quiz/exam has 80 points. Then, we all have slight variation on weights but in my section the course grade is 20% quizzes, 55% exams, and 25% final exam.

I’ve started using this in other classes as well. When students see the points on the quiz/exam it leads to a great conversation about how doing the homework can impact their success. If they did more homework they would likely do better on the exam/quiz questions to start and then have more homework points added on.

From the Carnegie Math Pathways team:

The Productive Persistence team recently compiled all of its learning about increasing homework completion (and attendance) rates into a page on the internal site. It includes tested activities and routines that promote productive academic behaviors, especially attendance and homework completion.

Are there any other effective strategies that you use not listed here? Still have questions? Contact us at [email protected].