Title

The Effect of Cumulative Tests on the Final Exam

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-2016

Journal Title

PRIMUS: Problems, Resources, and Issues in Mathematics Undergraduate Studies

Volume

26

Issue

9

Abstract

Mathematics teachers often give cumulative final exams, but little research has been done on the effects that cumulative exams given throughout the semester have on student grades and content knowledge. This study went beyond a cumulative final exam and investigated the benefits of cumulative versus non-cumulative semester exams on students’ final exam scores. Comparing control and experimental sections of an introductory mathematics course showed a positive effect of cumulative exams on final exam scores. Additionally, low-scoring students in the experimental sections performed better on the final exam compared to the average of their semester exams than low-scoring students in the control section. This interaction was not statistically significant, however.