Date of Award

May 2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Biomedical Sciences

First Advisor

Jeri-Anne Lyons

Committee Members

Shahla Anders, Dean Nardelli, Robert Burlage




The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of online learning aids on student performance and engagement. The thirty-five participants of the current study were students enrolled in two sections of a junior level Medical Microbiology laboratory. The experimental section was required to spend ten minutes each week on an online learning aid. The online program, StudyMateTM, was used to present text and images in the form of flash cards, multiple choice questions, matching, and crossword puzzles. Both groups completed the Index of Learning Style survey, an initial engagement survey at the start of the course, and a final engagement survey at the end of the course. Statistical analysis showed no significant differences between the groups at the start of the course or after the course was completed for learning style, science grade point average, overall grade point average, initial engagement or final engagement. A moderate correlation was found between microbiology course and laboratory grades and a reflective learning style.