The Concept Mastery Routine enables teachers to present complex, abstract concepts in a manner that will help students understand and apply the concept. Through use of the routine, teachers and students identify a target concept and its place within a larger framework, explore students' prior knowledge of the concept, identify important characteristics of the concept, analyze examples and nonexamples, create a definition, and test more examples and nonexamples to determine whether they belong to the concept group.

Research shows that use of the routine by secondary teachers benefits students in several ways. Students scored significantly better on tests designed to assess concept acquisition. Students also scored significantly better on regularly scheduled, teacher-made or commercial unit tests after introduction of the Concept Mastery Routine than before. Gains by students with learning disabilities (from a mean score of 60 percent to 71 percent) were comparable to those of their peers without learning disabilities (from a mean score of 72 percent to 87 percent) on these regular tests. The percentage of students with learning disabilities who passed increased from 57 percent to 75 percent; the percentage of students without learning disabilities who passed increased from 68 percent to 97 percent. Students also took better notes when teachers used the routine.

The Concept Mastery Routine Research



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