Factors Influencing Learning



Identifying and verifying the wide range of factors that might predict student learning is a task dominating educational psychology from its beginning. Hundreds of potential variables have been identified and several models have been developed to help organize research findings.

As an example, imagine that you hypothesize that the student characteristic of learning style is a good predictor of how well students would score on measures of learning. You would then begin an inquiry on that topic using the Capella library’s databases of refereed journals (peer-reviewed scholarly journals) and identify a number of different approaches to defining and measuring learning style. You might find that there are a wide variety of approaches to defining and measuring this variable (Coffield, Moseley, Hall, & Ecclestone, 2004). There are some positive reviews of the concept (Joy & Kolb, 2009; Kotecha, 2019) and some negative reviews (Pashler, McDaniel, Rohrer, & Bjork, 2009; Kirschner, 2017). You would summarize your findings and draw a conclusion regarding the validity of your hypothesis.


Your task as a new educational psychology researcher is to identify a factor that you believe to be an important predictor of student learning and report the results of your inquiry. While you have a lot of experience as a learner in a variety of contexts, you are bringing an inquiring mind to the scientific study of teaching and learning and you want to begin to understand some of the variables that have been studied and the methods used in this process.

In your assignment, include the following:

Provide an overview of prior research on the factors or variables that influence a specific measure of learning and analyze elements of the findings in relation to your topic.
Identify a specific variable hypothesized to influence learning, and provide specific methods by which it can be investigated scientifically.
Identify five research studies published in peer-reviewed journals that have investigated the variable you hypothesized to influence student learning and summarize each article.
Integrate research findings from the five articles you selected, and draw a conclusion based on the empirical evidence from these studies.

Your assignment should include:

A correctly-formatted APA title page.
An abstract that provides an overview of the document.
A body that includes an introduction and a summary/conclusions section and addresses all elements of the scoring guide.
A references page.

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