WWC review of this study

Writing Learning Journals: Instructional Support to Overcome Learning-Strategy Deficits

Hubner, Sandra; Nuckles, Matthias; Renkl, Alexander (2010). Learning and Instruction, v20 n1 p18-29. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ863671

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
    , grades

Reviewed: June 2017

No statistically significant positive
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Genre elements outcomes—Substantively important positive effect found for the domain
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
Significant? Improvement


Secondary Writing vs. Business as usual

7 Days

Learning Journal Example intervention group vs. Control group;
34 students





Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.

  • Male: 36%
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This study included students from different secondary schools in Germany.

Study sample

Mean age of 17.62, about one-third male.

Intervention Group

The intervention condition took place in session 1 (the "training" session) that lasted 2 hours, at the end of which a post-test was administered. Students in all conditions were first introduced to learning journals, and students in the prompting condition then watched a PowerPoint presentation on the effectiveness of declarative knowledge and conditional knowledge strategies. The students in the example condition watched a PowerPoint presentation that reviewed an exemplary learning journal, and students were required to answer questions confirming their understanding of the content. The prompting and example group viewed both PowerPoint presentations. After this, all students viewed a lecture during which they were not permitted to take notes. After the lecture, students were given 30 minutes to write in their learning journals, after which there were provided with instructional text on the topic covered in the video. They were then able to update their journals. Finally, students were tested on their comprehension of the material. One week later students attended session 2 (the "transfer" session), in which all groups received the same instruction, watched another video, again wrote in the learning journals, and in which another posttest was administered.

Comparison Group

The comparison group received the same general instructions and prompts provided in all experimental conditions, but no additional instruction.

Support for implementation

PowerPoint presentations and video lectures were used; no other support was provided.


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