In Fall 2015, of my Introduction to Psychology classes, I had an honors class required to do a research project. As such, I decided to have my honors class students research, design, run and analyze their own projects (for examples of their projects, feel free to email me!).
At the end of the semester I gave a common final to all of my introductory courses. To explore if actively doing research methods helps learning, I pulled questions from the final having to do with research methods and analyzed performance on those particular questions compared to the test as a whole.
My honors class's general test average was 81.36% (SD=17.67) while the average on the research methods section was 88.36% (SD=8.60, p=.14). Conversely, my non-honors class’s general test average was 69.93% (SD=19.60) while the average on the research section was 71.79% (SD=16.36, p=.754). While this finding is only approaching a near significant trend, it is interesting to see that my honors students did perform slightly better on the research related questions than on the test as a whole while my non-honors students did not differ between their scores.