Who Were The Homework Inventors & Why They Came Up With It

Homework is at the core of educational curricular in most countries. It gets credited with making the learning process more effective and more comfortable. A majority of individuals just found themselves doing homework without any idea about how it came about or who invented it. But at the same time, many students have an interest in knowing who came up with homework as many don’t like it. So who invented homework?

Historical Facts about Homework

Pliny, an oratory teacher during the 1st century AD in ancient Rome, invented homework. He asked his students in Quintilian to do home assignments. The practice aimed to develop an individual’s speaking skills in an informal setting. With the results proving impressible, almost every other tutor employed the same approach in teaching from then onwards.

However, the real person to invent homework is Roberto Nevilis, an Italian pedagog who came up with the concept as a form of punishment to his learners in 1905. Homework then formed an essential practice from then on to date.

The education system underwent a significant change in the latter stages of the 19th century. Success and advancements got attributed to the homework type and frequency changes by teachers which impacted the quality of education. Most of the teachers then followed this homework blueprint as an essential enabler for training students. It became compulsory in every form of teaching and defined the education process in most countries.  

The Key Purpose of Homework

The initial role homework was to play include:

  • Providing students with an opportunity to work without a hurry so that they can get a good grasp of concepts without pressure or judgment.
  • Offering students an opportunity to study without external estimation which promotes repetition and reinforcement of concepts studied in class 
  • Students also pick an optimal rhythm and hours to work to expand and consolidate different skills key in independent work.
  • To enlist every available information source in a student’s study by building the capacity to extract information from diverse information sources such as the library, etc.
  • Students can also plan their work schedule, which enforces independence and ability to build on their research skills such as assumption, comparison, construction of hypothesis, etc.  

The Role of Assignments in Enhancing the Quality of Education

Homework helps in easing the process of learning, especially when one improves the organization and content of a specific subject. Homework has different types with each aimed at enhancing the quality of knowledge students get, enhancing the process of learning, and systemizing the knowledge acquired.

Assimilation of activity methods and knowledge is vital according to findings by psychologists. The main viewpoint and knowledge consolidation during a class requires arbitrary organization in an effective manner of the process of study, which gets adequate support through assigning homework. The main reason is that homework enables subsequent processing and application of current knowledge. Further, if the viewpoint and knowledge consolidation is frontal, then the following process has to be independent and individual.


Homework should not be an instrument of controlling students but an opportunity where students can devote time to studying a particular subject. As such, it will allow the systemization of class knowledge and subsequent sharpening of skills concerning a matter. Further understanding the history and inventors of homework can improve and transform the negative perceptions students have regarding homework. When a student thinks he or she has to do my homework now, they should anticipate it with excitement rather than be despondent about assignments.

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