A comparison of teams-games-tournaments (TGT) and traditional classroom methods in high school biology
Dechow, Rebecca Ross
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Since 1970, researchers at Johns Hopkins University have studied the effects of a game technique called the tearns-games-tournament method on the achievement scores, attitudes, and classroom process of elementary and junior high students. Their findings raised many questions about the applicability of team-games to affect achievement at the high school level or in subject areas other than math and English. In 1980, the National Science Foundation allocated funds for the creation of TGT materials for seventh-grade science, even though research of its effectiveness for science courses had not been conducted. This study was designed to provide answers to the following questions: Would high school students playing teams-games-tournaments have greater academic achievement in a high school biology course than students in classes using traditional classroom methods? Would high school students in TGT classes have greater retention of knowledge after a delayed period of time than those students in classes using traditional classroom methods? Would high school students in TGT classes have more positive attitudes toward the subject of biology than students in classes using traditional classroom methods? Would high school students like TGT better as a means for studying chapter material than traditional methods? Eight biology classes were involved in the seven-week treatment period. Analysis of variance was used to compare control and experimental groups for (1) pre-test cognitive knowledge, (2) post-test cognitive knowledge, (3) delayed post-test cognitive knowledge, (4) pre-test attitudes towards biology, and (5) post-test attitudes towards biology. Analysis of covariance was computed using I.Q. and pre-test scores as covariates for post-test cognitive means and delayed post-test cognitive means. A dependent t-test was computed for attitudes of experimental classes towards team-games. TGT had no significant effect on the biology achievement scores or attitudes towards biology of high school students in this study. Experimental classes did like team-games and sustained their attitudes towards them for the duration of the study.
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