School of Education


Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)


Michelle J Barthlow


STEM, Online Homework, Academic Achievement, Metacognition, Biology


Biology | Education


This study sought to address a gap in the literature to determine whether a relationship exists between use of online homework and student achievement in undergraduate biology courses. Previous studies have examined other STEM courses, but few have considered biology. The purpose of the study was to determine whether homework grades in online homework systems can predict student achievement in introductory undergraduate biology courses. This study utilized a correlational analysis by multiple regression using archival data to determine whether final course grades in undergraduate biology courses can be predicted by grades on online homework, time spent on online homework, gender, or participation in a course on metacognition. A second question considered whether performance on a major assignment in a course on metacognition correlated with biology course grades and found a moderate correlation. The study took place at a small private Christian university in the Southeast, with 311 participants. The study found that there is a significant predictive ability to use these variables in determining course grades. Homework scores were most predictive, but time spent on homework and gender were also significant. Participation in a course on metacognition gave inconclusive results and is one suggestion for further research. Keywords: STEM, online homework, academic achievement, metacognition