Does homework improve a student’s academic achievement?

As children, we were all reminded of the importance of doing our homework – and as college students, it seems even more vital to complete and turn in each assignment to achieve the best grade point average. However, does spending all that time doing your homework actually result in greater achievement? Or are you struggling to come up with the right answers on your own when you could be getting homework help – and learning just as much?

Elementary students

Research shows that in elementary school, homework does little more than help students build strong study habits – it makes no difference to academic performance. It’s likely that younger children aren’t as capable of tuning out the many distractions that come from doing schoolwork at home instead of at school, since they are used to home being a place for play and social interaction. Studies have also revealed that younger students can struggle more with homework assignments, as they haven’t yet learned how to effectively tackle projects on their own.

Middle school students

Once a student reaches middle school, studies show that any more than 90 minutes of homework each night results in diminishing returns. Practice assignments do help improve test scores, but doing regular homework throughout the semester doesn’t have as much of an impact as one might think, considering how often teachers send students home with additional work.

High school students

The link between homework and academic achievement is more significant for older students. Each academic course will likely provide students with approximately 30 minutes of daily homework – or more, for advanced placement and honors courses. Still, returns will begin to diminish after anywhere between 90 minutes to 2.5 hours of homework time.

For this reason, students are recommended to balance their course load, to ensure that they aren’t taking on too many intense academic courses in one semester. This will help keep their homework manageable.

College students

By the time a student starts college, they should have established solid study habits – and homework should be less of a challenge. However, it’s still important to maintain that balance between academics and other subjects, as well as extra-curricular activities. Students should aim to do around two hours of homework each day for optimum academic achievement. Any more than that, studies show an increased probability of diminished returns.

The impact of doing homework

Homework does provide significant value to students – primarily because it helps them build a strong work ethic, develop a sense of responsibility, and learn effective study skills. It also shows students how they can continue their learning outside of the school environment, and gives parents the chance to participate in their child’s education and evaluate their progress.

However, there are some detrimental impacts, as well. Too much homework can cause students to feel overwhelmed or bored with the subject matter, or it can keep students from investing time in leisure activities that could provide other valuable life lessons. Allowing parents to become involved can also lead to problems, like pressuring the child to succeed or offering information that conflicts with what was taught in class.

Solutions for students

While some amount of homework is certainly important to ensure academic success, students should focus on limiting the time they spend doing additional schoolwork at home. For college students who are overwhelmed by the volume of their assignments, online writing services could provide the ideal solution – allowing students to focus their allotted homework time on one or two assignments, while outsourcing some of their work to experienced professionals for extra homework help. This way, students will achieve the benefits of doing their homework and complete their assignments to the best of their ability.