Graduate School of Education the Lecture Series #3: Hanna Dumont

Opportunities and Risks of Parental Homework Involvement: Insights from Germany and Switzerland Dr. Hanna Dumont

Course Description
In the German and Swiss educational context, schools and families are regarded as two distinct and independent environments in which children learn and are socialized. Homework is the setting in which home and school intersect most closely. On the one hand, this implies a great potential to bridge these two learning environments of children. On the other hand, homework may also be the cause for conflict between parents, children and schools. Based on several longitudinal large-scale survey and assessment studies from Germany and Switzerland, in which secondary school students were asked about their parents’ involvement in their homework process, I will present findings on the opportunities and risks of parental homework involvement for children’s academic development showing that it is the quality of parental homework involvement that matters, not its quantity. I will then discuss implications for policy and practice and outline several ways how parents and teachers can improve the homework setting for children.