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Research Participation Improves Student's Exam Performance

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  10 January 2013

Beatriz Gil-Gómez de Liaño*
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain)
Orfelio G. León
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain)
David Pascual-Ezama
Universidad Complutense (Spain)
Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Beatriz Gil-Gómez de Liaño. Dpto. Psicología Social y Metodología, Facultad de Psicología, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. C/ Ivan Pavlov, 6, 28049 Madrid (Spain). Email:


Although there have been several attempts to explore for beneficial effects of research participation in social sciences, most of them have mainly explored satisfaction and students learning perceptions (e.g., Bowman & Waite, 2003). Very few works have studied learning by measuring exam performance. Moreover, participation has been usually conceptualized as a mixture of active and passive participation, including in the same measure different practices such as filling up questionnaires, running experiments or reading and answering questions about a journal article or a scientific conference. The present work tries to determine if there is an advantage due to research participation comparing exam performance, satisfaction and perceived learning of the matter Research Methods in Psychology, in three different groups (non-participating, passive and active participating). As we can see in the results, the mere participation benefits exam performance. Results are discussed in terms of the use of research participation as a new powerful active method in education.

Aunque ha habido varios intentos por estudiar los posibles efectos beneficiosos de la participación en investigaciones en ciencias sociales, la mayoría de ellos han estudiado la satisfacción y la percepción de aprendizaje de los alumnos (e.g., Bowman & Waite, 2003), y muy pocos trabajos han tomado medidas del rendimiento en los exámenes. Además, la participación ha sido habitualmente conceptualizada como una mezcla entre participación activa y pasiva, incluyendo en la misma medida prácticas muy distintas tales como rellenar cuestionarios, pasar experimentos o leer y responder a una serie de cuestiones sobre un artículo o una conferencia científica. El presente trabajo pretende determinar si existe beneficio en el rendimiento en un examen, la satisfacción y el aprendizaje percibido por los alumnos en la materia de Métodos de investigación en psicología, en tres grupos distintos (grupo de no participación, participación pasiva y participación activa) gracias a la participación en una investigación en psicología. Como se puede ver en los resultados, la mera participación beneficia la ejecución en el examen. Los resultados son discutidos en términos del uso de la participación de nuestros estudiantes en investigaciones, como un nuevo y potente método activo de educación.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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