Jen Sihan Wang
In my DSRF-funded project, I was able to work on a study that investigates the correlations between note-taking formats, learning content, study expectations, and student learning outcomes. The debate over the “best practices” of note-taking remains inconclusive. Some have found that longhand note-taking is associated with better student learning outcomes, while others have found the opposite. In my literature-reading process, I found certain studies indicating that the relative advantages of either format may be connected to the nature of inputs and the nature of the study process. For instance, Luo et al. (2018) examined two kinds of inputs – image-related and text-related contents— and two modes of studying— reviewing after note-taking, and no reviewing at all. They found complex interactions between these variables. In the course of the summer, I designed a study that replicates and extends Luo et al.’s (2018) study. The design allowed me to control for students’ expectations for whether they will study their notes pre-assessment. This will allow us to gauge how learning expectations affect the types of notes taken and potentially mediate different learning outcomes.
During the summer, I read a range of literature to narrow down my research question. I drafted the study design and perfected it through discussions with my supervisor and running dress runs of the experiment. The literature I’ve read and the study methodology I’ve designed prepare me to continue and conduct an independent study in Fall 2021. It was my pleasure to work with my supervisors Dr. Bridgette Hard, and Michelle Wong. And I deeply appreciate the financial support from DSRF that made this project possible.