Date of Conferral

1-1-2009

Degree

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

School

Education

Advisor

Stephanie Helms

Abstract

Research on students' voices and perspectives regarding homework is absent from the literature. This qualitative case study explored the perspectives of 5th and 6th grade students and ten teachers' perceptions regarding homework completion. The literature review revealed 3 trends in homework, including support homework, support against homework, and homework reform. However, most of this research considers the adults' perspective. The researcher administered 46 questionnaires and conducted 12 in depth interviews using a stratified purposive sample and extreme case sampling. The questionnaires and interviews educed the participants' perceptions and practices regarding homework. The students represented 4 distinct groups: English language learners, general education, gifted and talented, and special education. The teachers instruct 5th and 6th grade. The researcher analyzed the data using critical pedagogy framework, constant comparison method and a transcript based analysis. The findings of this study revealed that students do not complete their homework because they find it too hard, boring, or they do not understand it. The participants expressed liking research projects because they afford flexibility and creativity. The results also suggest no substantial difference in the students' responses from various groups. The teachers' responses revealed that 90% of the participants assign incomplete classwork as homework, disclosing a lack of training in designing homework. This study contributes to the existing literature and enhances social change initiatives by taking the students' perception into consideration and echoing their voice in the literature. Teachers and administrators can use the results of this study to develop homework practices that would increase homework completion and student learning.