The purpose of this experimental research was to investigate studying strategies for learning transferable knowledge. The research involved a comparison of three study strategies (elaborative concept mapping, retrieval by writing, retrieval by concept mapping) with respect to their effects on recall and inference performance. A sample of 120 participants was randomly assigned to four conditions: concept mapping with no retrieval practice, retrieval practice using handwriting, retrieval practice using handwriting with concept map training, and retrieval practice using concept mapping. A posttest consisting of 14 short-answer recall questions and 5 short-answer inference questions was conducted. Among the four conditions there was no statistically significant difference found in the measured outcomes. In accordance with prior research, this study suggests that retrieval practice by concept mapping is an alternative study strategy that has approximately the same effectiveness as retrieval practice by writing. Possible reasons for discrepancies between other aspects of these results and prior research are discussed.
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Thesis advisor: Nesbit, John
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