Knowledge of Results

“Knowledge of Results” (KR) does decrease the practice time students need to master skills and concepts. If a student begins by attempting a new activity, like kickball, containing a small array of skills, throwing, kicking, catching, they would likely practice all skills equally until mastering the skills. However, if feedback is provided students after their initial practice session it will allow students to focus future practice where it is needed. So perhaps their throwing skills meet the grade level expectation already, their catching skills are close to meeting expectations and they are noticeably challenged by hitting. Future practice sessions could focus time on skills with the greatest deficit first. This would take the student less time total of practice to reach grade level mastery as they would be focusing on the areas that need it most. For physical education, I would introduce a new sport, like kickball. We would practice each skill individually and I would provide detailed and specific feedback about student’s performance. This might be a week of skill acquisition practice where would cover how to safely perform a skill needed to play the game: throwing overhand and underhand, catching, and kicking. This would be a bit like pre-teaching vocabulary. We would practice each skill prior to playing an actual game of kickball. During the first day, students would be introduced to each of the skills, we would rotate through the skill stations as a whole class with me providing 100% KR feedback for form and safety of the skill. During the second through fifth day, students would be put into small groups and rotate through the skill stations to practice. I would provide high-frequency KR feedback to a different station each day. The following week we would do a skill practice warm-up with medium frequency KR feedback and then play the game with low-frequency KR feedback. The goal would be to be able to use this game throughout the school year tapering down to no KR feedback.

However, my research indicated that there is a fine balance between helpful amounts of KR feedback and detrimental amounts of KR feedback. Constant higher frequencies of KR feedback lead to better results in the acquisition phase for students. Unfortunately, it also leads to less success during retention testing. Lower frequencies of KR feedback had lower results in the acquisition phase but “yielded lower absolute error during the retention test”(Vieira, Ugrinowitsch, Oliveira, Gallo, & Benda, 2012). It is suggested that teachers provide higher frequency KR feedback during initial acquisition practice systematically lowering the amount of KR feedback for the fastest mastery and greatest to encourage student long term retention of material.

Vieira, M., Ugrinowitsch, H., Oliveira, F. S., Gallo, L., & Benda, R. (2012). Effects of knowledge of results (KR) frequency in the learning of a timing skill: Absolute versus relative KR frequency. Retrieved September 7, 2017, from 

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