Moshe Machlev


Karlin, Nancy

Committee Member

Pugh, Kevin J.

Committee Member

Welsh, Marilyn C., 1955-


Educational Psychology


University of Northern Colorado

Type of Resources


Place of Publication

Greeley (Colo.)


University of Northern Colorado

Date Created





126 pages

Digital Origin

Born digital


Additional research is needed to explore the relationship between different types of instructional humor and different educational outcomes. Limited empirical evidence existed for specific types of humor as related to educational outcomes. This relationship was considered by exploring different types of humor and its association with specific educational outcomes such as relatedness, interest, affect, perceived learning, and actual learning. The current study adds to a body of research that is small in scope. Conducting this type of research while taking into account different variables such as student gender enhances research seeking a clearer understanding of humor in the classroom. The current author recognizes that the use of humor by instructors is something that is encouraged among educators (Lundberg & Thurston, 2002, Strean, 2011) and exercised by them (Wanzer, Frymier., Wojtaszczyk, & Smith, 2006). However, although the use of humor is common, understanding various aspects of its use remain unclear. The present research has applicable value with regard to the association of various types of humor with educational outcomes. Specifically, the current study examined the use of humor in the classroom and different educational outcomes. In addition the current study also examined the relationship of some of those outcomes with perceived learning, and actual learning. Different educational outcomes were examined using quantitative methods of research. Participants were asked to fill out measures on demographics, perceived relatedness (verbal and nonverbal), affect, interest, perceived learning, and instructor sense of humor. Participant’s final grade in the course was also obtained. The study consisted of 195 undergraduate students (n=117, 60% female; 78, 40% male). The age of these participants ranged from 18 to 25 with a mean of 18.91 years (SD=1.29).A factor analysis identified two distinct types of humor (relevant/appropriate and non-relevant). The study found that relevant/appropriate humor predicted the educational outcomes of: perceived verbal relatedness, perceived non-verbal relatedness, interest, affect, and perceived learning. But the relationship between relevant/appropriate humor and perceived learning was mediated by the different educational outcomes mentioned. Non-relevant humor predicted the educational outcomes of interest and affect. In addition, no relationship was found between the different types of humor and actual learning, and there were no differences in the interaction between different types of humor and gender and its relationship with different educational outcomes. The study is of value in understanding instructor humor and its relationship with different educational outcomes. More specifically, current findings shed light on how various forms of humor predict educational outcomes.

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