The author describes the process and the results of three experiments with the use of programmed instruction and teaching machines as one of the possible ways of making higher education more effective. The results of the first experiment with a programme of a linear type partly confirm the applicability of programmed instruction even to older learners and demonstrate the necessity of their preliminary training in the new method of studying. The final results of programmed instruction are clearly affected not only the quality of the programme itself, but also by the quality of the presentation of the subject-matter by means of didactic technique. The second experiment studied the influence of violating the principles of individual tempo and the principle of immediate verification (the so-called ≫back coupling≪) on the performance in programmed learning. The results of the experiment justify the criticism of some principles of programmed Instruction and suggest the possibility of its applicability to mas instruction of large groups of persons. The linear type of programme used has proved to be of great advantage in those higher education courses where the didactic aim is complete mastery of a large amount of information in a short space of time. The subject of the third experiment was the so-called ≫semi-programmed instruction≪, i. e. a combination of the traditional method of instruction with a programmed text and teaching machines. This form of instruction led to raising the students’ activity, to a marked improvement in technical skills and to transferring the study habits to the study of other subjects, too. In this method of instruction the role of the teacher is not diminished, on the contrary, it is enhanced in the sense of a differentiated approach to the students and the general controlling work of the leading factor in the educational process. In conclusion the author points out the possibility of using the results of the experimental verification of the effectiveness of programmed instruction and teaching machines in the army and elsewhere, especially in technical education, industry and transport.