Homework Debate

December 6, 2002 • Volume 12, Issue 42
Do teachers assign too much work?
By Patrick Marshall

Introduction

Many American students and their parents complain that teachers are assigning so much homework they are producing a generation of stressed, sleep-deprived kids who are “burned out” before they even get to college.  (Corbis)
Many American students and their parents complain that teachers are assigning so much homework they are producing a generation of stressed, sleep-deprived kids who are “burned out” before they even get to college. (Corbis)

Many youngsters today — along with their parents — complain that teachers are assigning too much homework, producing sleep deprivation, increased stress and a generation of kids on the verge of being burned out before they reach college. Some educators blame heavier homework loads on the education reform movement, which punishes schools whose students don't improve their scores on new, mandatory statewide achievement tests. But homework proponents say American students spend less time on homework than their European and Asian counterparts, while spending more time watching television, talking on the phone or working at after-school jobs. Research on the effectiveness of homework is inconclusive, as are the studies on whether it is actually increasing or on the decline.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Stress
Feb. 12, 2010  Sleep Deprivation
Dec. 06, 2002  Homework Debate
Aug. 04, 1995  Job Stress
Jun. 23, 1995  Repetitive Stress Injuries
Aug. 14, 1992  Work, Family and Stress
Aug. 13, 1982  Pressures on Youth
Nov. 28, 1980  Stress Management
Jul. 15, 1970  Stress In Modern Life
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Education Standards and Testing
Elementary and Secondary Education