Whole and part practice: a meta-analysis

Abstract

Motor learning textbooks provide specific recommendations for the use of whole and part practice during motor skill acquisition. Magill recommended basing decisions on Naylor and Briggs’ hypothesis of task complexity and organization, while Schmidt and Wrisberg recommended basing decisions on skill classification. To evaluate the accuracy of these recommendations, a meta-analysis was conducted. Through a literature search, 44 articles were located, and 20 provided sufficient information to calculate effect sizes. Effect sizes were calculated using means for whole and part practice for acquisition and retention. Although several analyses were compromised by insufficient studies investigating whole and part practice, mean effect sizes generally supported motor learning textbooks. To better verify the empirical validity of recommendations for the use of whole and part practice, more studies are necessary.

Publication
Perceptual and Motor Skills
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