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How Important is it for Students to Come to Class Prepared?

By McGraw-Hill Education 3 years agoNo Comments
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You’ve spent countless hours researching and prepping the material for your lectures and course content. You think you’ve figured out what information would serve your students best, and structured it in a way that would coincide with the learning path you’ve planned.

Now all you need your students to do is follow that path. You’ve given them the tools and resources, and they simply need to review them. Reading doesn’t necessarily result in learning if comprehension doesn’t occur, so at the very least, you’d like your students to come to class ready to discuss the course material they were assigned and have reviewed. You’d like them to come to class prepared to engage.

But how important is it?

Every student who comes to class unprepared delays the learning path momentum. We don’t move on with the journey, we halt, take three steps back and stand still. Aside from student and instructor frustration, this detracts from the overall course experience. A study conducted by professors Heiner, Banet, and Wieman at UBC on class preparedness, found that students themselves recognize the benefits to their learning of reading before class, and using productive reading strategies.

More then 75% of students in the study agreed that pre-readings were helpful to their learning.  Although the study determined the legitimacy of pre-reading, it did not analyze the methodology.

In January of 2016, McGraw-Hill learning scientists conducted our own study to help determine the student impact of our learning science technology resource SmartBook.

SmartBook is an adaptive learning platform that not only creates an interactive reading and learning environment, but adapts to the learning style and pace of each individual user. This technology provides a solution to the question, “How do I teach the same content in the same time, to 500+ students who all have different learning styles?”

The study concluded that 86% of students agreed that SmartBook helped them be better prepared for class.

“Requiring students to complete the material in advance has allowed me to increase the level of difficulty or “ramp up” the discussion as students have the basic material now to go above and beyond what we could before. I am finding that students are more prepared for in-class quizzes and exams than without the on-line practice,” – Brandy Mackintosh, Assistant Professor of Intro to Financial Accounting, University of Saskatchewan


Class preparedness allows instructors to continue the momentum of their course path, time spent in class to be more effective and productive, and allows students to be present and assured of the material being discussed.

To Demo our Connect with SmartBook technology and increase class preparedness in your course contact us here.

  Higher Education, Learning Science
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