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 Title
 A comparison of two distinctive preparations for quantitative items in the Scholastic Aptitude Test.
 Creator

Kelly, Frances Smith., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The SAT is a major milestone for many high school juniors and seniors. Scoring as high as possible is of utmost concern for college bound students because SAT scores often determine the college or university they may attend and the scholarships they may receive. As a result, those who can financially afford to take prep courses for the SAT do., Over the past forty years research studies have found that SAT preparation increases test scores. These previous studies have been concerned only with...
Show moreThe SAT is a major milestone for many high school juniors and seniors. Scoring as high as possible is of utmost concern for college bound students because SAT scores often determine the college or university they may attend and the scholarships they may receive. As a result, those who can financially afford to take prep courses for the SAT do., Over the past forty years research studies have found that SAT preparation increases test scores. These previous studies have been concerned only with increasing test scores. To date, no study has investigated if one method of preparation produces higher gains than another, nor has any study identified those students for whom preparation is most beneficial. A comparison of methods among existing studies is impossible because most reports do not include the methods or materials used., The contents of most SAT preparatory books deal primarily with a review of the mathematical concepts involved. However, an inspection of several SAT items reveals that the SAT tests more than mere rote calculations and algebraic manipulationsit tests "understanding," "application," and "nonroutine" methods of problem solving. Therefore, the present study was proposed to examine and assess the effectiveness of two methods of student preparation for the SATM: the first method of preparation explored content review, solving each item in a rigid traditional manner, and the second method of preparation examines the use of flexible problem solving strategies to answer the items rather than using routine mathematical manipulations., Sixtytwo juniors and seniors participated in the study. The results of the study showed that the students taught testtaking strategies scored significantly better than the control group. However, this strategies group did not score significantly better than the group who was taught content. The content group did not score significantly better than the control group. This indicates that students could benefit from instruction in flexible, nonroutine methods of solving SATM items efficiently.
Show less  Date Issued
 1992, 1992
 Identifier
 AAI9306060, 3091100, FSDT3091100, fsu:77757
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 Achieving comprehensive curriculum reform: An analysis of the implementation of a mathematics and science education policy.
 Creator

Dana, Thomas Michael., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The 1983 Educational Reform Act in Florida mandated the development of the Comprehensive Plan for Improving Mathematics, Science, and Computer Education in Florida. In the plan, eight overall goals provided a framework for improving mathematics, science, and computer education during the tenyear period from 1989 to 1999. Those goals were to strengthen the curriculum, to make learning mathematics and science more exciting, to use stateoftheart instructional technology to enhance learning,...
Show moreThe 1983 Educational Reform Act in Florida mandated the development of the Comprehensive Plan for Improving Mathematics, Science, and Computer Education in Florida. In the plan, eight overall goals provided a framework for improving mathematics, science, and computer education during the tenyear period from 1989 to 1999. Those goals were to strengthen the curriculum, to make learning mathematics and science more exciting, to use stateoftheart instructional technology to enhance learning, to better prepare and enhance teachers, to encourage students from underrepresented populations, to redesign student and program assessment models, and to promote productive partnerships with schools, businesses, industries, community members, and parents., The purpose of this study was to provide a systematic profile of what has been done in schools, districts, and the State of Florida to reach the goals of the Comprehensive Plan and to determine key issues pertaining to implementation. A set of indicators of progress in mathematics and science education were constructed and provided a frame for data collection and analysis., Findings of the study illuminate state, district, and local level happenings with respect to each of the eight goals of the Comprehensive Plan. It can be interpreted from the findings that the degree of implementation of this plan varied greatly both within and between the three levels studied. Topics such as coordination within and between levels, vision of how the plan could be implemented, commitment to implement the plan, and technical assistance provided an analytic frame for understanding implementation issues. Curriculum reform of the magnitude recommended did not occur to the degree expected in original implementation plans. Although some change was noted in state, district, and school practices over the first two years of implementation, there was little evidence to indicate change also occurred with respect to the underlying principles of the plan, which emphasized the importance of active student involvement in constructing mathematical and scientific knowledge.
Show less  Date Issued
 1992, 1992
 Identifier
 AAI9222374, 3087770, FSDT3087770, fsu:76580
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 A comparison of learning probability by several formulas versus an approach relying upon an understanding of the fundamental concept of probability.
 Creator

Swiersz, Thomas Joseph., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

This study compared two different approaches to the teaching of elementary probability to 196 community college students. These two approaches were identified as the single concept approach and the multiformula approach. In the single concept approach the students solved probability problems by relying solely upon the definition of 'probability'. Students in the multiformula approach solved probability problems by the traditional approach of using several formulas., The multiformula group...
Show moreThis study compared two different approaches to the teaching of elementary probability to 196 community college students. These two approaches were identified as the single concept approach and the multiformula approach. In the single concept approach the students solved probability problems by relying solely upon the definition of 'probability'. Students in the multiformula approach solved probability problems by the traditional approach of using several formulas., The multiformula group and the single concept group were compared on achievement, retention, and transfer. An analysis of variance was used to analyze the achievement scores. The single concept group scored significantly higher (pvalue = 0.0001). An analysis of covariance was used to analyze the retention scores. The single concept group scored significantly higher (pvalue = 0.025). An analysis of variance was performed on the transfer items. Again, the single concept group scored significantly higher than the multiformula group on the transfer items both on achievement and retention. The pvalue was equal to 0.0001 for both analyses., A depth of understanding may account for these results. Whereas the multiformula group divided their time and effort among several concepts associated with their formulas, the single concept group concentrated their efforts and attention on the single definitional concept. One might conjecture that students versed in a single concept would outperform those spreading the same amount of time over many concepts (formulas)., In addition to investigating the learning of probability, this study relates to two types of understanding identified by Richard Skemp. Instrumental understanding is identified with the multiformula group and Relational understanding with the single concept group. The results of this study suggest that the single concept approach may be better for learning other mathematical concepts. For example, the idea of perimeter as the distance around a figure contrasted with a collection of formulas for finding the perimeters of various figures. Another example is the definitional meaning of integral exponents contrasted with a variety of formulas addressing operations with exponents., In view of the success with the single concept approach used in this study, additional research would tell if similar success may be realized with other mathematical topics.
Show less  Date Issued
 1990, 1990
 Identifier
 AAI9112118, 3162163, FSDT3162163, fsu:78361
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 Constructing a portrait of a high school mathematics teacher in Costa Rica.
 Creator

Diaz Obando, Evangelina., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

Recent work by researchers in the area of teaching practice proposes that assisting teachers to reconstruct their epistemologies and beliefs about the nature of the subject to be learned appears to be a powerful way of enhancing teaching and learning in mathematics classrooms. A growing body of research questions the level of mathematical sense making of students in classroom based activities, suggesting that current classroom practice conceptualizations need improvements., The purpose of...
Show moreRecent work by researchers in the area of teaching practice proposes that assisting teachers to reconstruct their epistemologies and beliefs about the nature of the subject to be learned appears to be a powerful way of enhancing teaching and learning in mathematics classrooms. A growing body of research questions the level of mathematical sense making of students in classroom based activities, suggesting that current classroom practice conceptualizations need improvements., The purpose of this research was to investigate the factors relating to the decisions that teachers make about their practice, more specifically, teacher and students beliefs about mathematics, teaching and learning mathematics, various interactions and its relationships with what happen during classroom practice, via a case study of a high school teacher, in the context of Costa Rica. The case study provides a detailed description and analysis of the researcher's interpretation of the teacher and some of her students. This study was conducted under a constructivist framework., Data for this research were collected over a six month period. The primary data sources were field notes from class observations, and formal and informal recorded interviews/discussions. The investigation also involved participant observations in the classroom and planning sessions., A narrative of Sofia's experiences during the research progress was developed using themes such as metaphors, beliefs (about mathematics, teaching mathematics, and learning mathematics), and actions, to describe Sofia's teaching style. Another theme was regarding teacher's and students' roles, and their views about each other., The researcher found that teaching is very complex. Throughout Sofia's actions there were evidences that different components were woven together. Sofia held two contrasting sets of beliefs. Sofia's stated beliefs were that the teacher's main role is to provide students with opportunities to construct meanings for themselves, while her beliefsinpractice suggested that direct instruction (teacher as dispenser of knowledge) is an effective way to teach. When planning, Sofia was more influenced by the syllabus and topics to be covered than student knowledge.
Show less  Date Issued
 1993, 1993
 Identifier
 AAI9413292, 3088254, FSDT3088254, fsu:77058
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 THE EFFECTIVENESS OF USING MICROCOMPUTERS IN LEARNING ALGEBRAIC PRECEDENCE CONVENTIONS.
 Creator

ALGHAMDI, YOUSIF ABDULLAH SANAD., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The rules for order of operations are important to students in numerical computation, simplifying algebraic expressions, evaluating formulas, writing proofs, solving equations, and success on standardized tests. Errors in evaluating expressions that require knowledge of this topic are often found at middle and high school. Moreover, pilot testing revealed that college students also committed such errors. Some students made errors that were consistent with an incorrect interpretation of the My...
Show moreThe rules for order of operations are important to students in numerical computation, simplifying algebraic expressions, evaluating formulas, writing proofs, solving equations, and success on standardized tests. Errors in evaluating expressions that require knowledge of this topic are often found at middle and high school. Moreover, pilot testing revealed that college students also committed such errors. Some students made errors that were consistent with an incorrect interpretation of the My Dear Aunt Sally mnemonic., A few scholars have given careful thought to order of operations. However, many students, teachers and texts have given little attention to this topic. Microcomputers can give students appreciation and motivation for studying conventions. The fact that some of these rules are built into microcomputers allows students to investigate them with rich and varied activities enhanced by immediate feedback., This study has shown that the time ordinarily used in teaching these conventions may not be adequate. A questionnaire revealed that most students had only one class period studying the topic., Since students had exhibited definite weaknesses on grouping conventions and since the use of computers employ such conventions, a study was done to determine the effectiveness of using microcomputers in teaching this topic. The study involved 132 students at three high schools in Florida. The experimental group was taught the conventions with the aid of microcomputers. The control group was taught the conventions through traditional teaching methods without the use of microcomputers., The results of the experiment showed that the experimental group performed significantly better than the control group. The experimental group scored significantly higher (.05) than the control group on achievement, retention, and transfer., During the pilot study a new difficulty related to conventions was noticed. Expressions that involved numerals repeated in certain ways, "special numerals," were missed with high frequency. The study showed that the whole group of subjects (experimental and control) performed significantly worse at evaluating these special numeral expressions as opposed to the regular expressions.
Show less  Date Issued
 1987, 1987
 Identifier
 AAI8711707, 3086536, FSDT3086536, fsu:76011
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 The effects of instructional control, cognitive style, and prior knowledge on learning of selected CBI taught arithmetic skills in a Korean elementary school.
 Creator

Yoon, GwanSik., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects on achievement of: (1) instructional control strategies, (2) prior knowledge, and (3) cognitive style in computerbased instruction. Also, this study attempts to find an optimal type of instructional control strategy based upon students' achievement and learning time. The contents of the nine lessons selected for this study are the multiplication facts. This type of computerbased instruction is basically composed of drill and practice...
Show moreThe purpose of this study is to investigate the effects on achievement of: (1) instructional control strategies, (2) prior knowledge, and (3) cognitive style in computerbased instruction. Also, this study attempts to find an optimal type of instructional control strategy based upon students' achievement and learning time. The contents of the nine lessons selected for this study are the multiplication facts. This type of computerbased instruction is basically composed of drill and practice programs. These computerbased instruction drill and practice lesson programs are developed for IBM compatible computers. To assess field independence and field dependence, the Children's Embedded Figures Test (CEFT) is employed. This CEFT developed as an instrument to identify the field independent and field dependent 7 to 12 year old students. The student population involved in this investigation comes from the DongSung Private Elementary School located in Pusan, Korea. One hundred sixtysix second and third grade students were selected for this study during the second semester of the 1993 school year. The basic experimental design is 3 (program control, learner control, and learner control with advisement) x 2 (high and low prior knowledge) x 2 (field independence and field dependence). The dependent variable are the achievement score on the posttest and the time that students actually spend completing the computerbased lesson. The results show types of instructional control strategies interact with levels of prior knowledge and types of cognitive styles. This study suggests that instructional control strategies would be used differently based on students' aptitudes; also, instructional design should be considered with time on task.
Show less  Date Issued
 1993, 1993
 Identifier
 AAI9410171, 3088237, FSDT3088237, fsu:77041
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 An investigation of van Hielelike levels of learning in transformation geometry of secondary school students in Singapore.
 Creator

Soon, YeePing., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The main objective of this study was to investigate the hierarchical nature of the van Hiele levels in the learning of transformation geometry. Secondary school students in Singapore completed tasks using the concepts of reflection, rotation, translation and enlargement. In addition, the van Hiele levels of two current Singapore textbooks were analyzed for transformation geometry., A level characterization for transformation geometry was written after interpreting related research reports....
Show moreThe main objective of this study was to investigate the hierarchical nature of the van Hiele levels in the learning of transformation geometry. Secondary school students in Singapore completed tasks using the concepts of reflection, rotation, translation and enlargement. In addition, the van Hiele levels of two current Singapore textbooks were analyzed for transformation geometry., A level characterization for transformation geometry was written after interpreting related research reports. Test items were then developed, and critiqued by a nationallybased panel of mathematics educators. The items, revised for the first four levels were used in interviews with twenty secondary four students (ages 1516) from a school. The audiotaped and videotaped interviews took two sessions of one and a half hours each. In the analysis, two persons independently assigned levels based on students' responses. These responses were analyzed for existence of level hierarchy using a Guttman Scalogram and for patterns of thinking. Textbooks were analyzed to identify levels for the content and the sequencing of the levels in the material., Results indicated the levels form a possible hierarchy. The percentage of responses at each level of thinking was: 42.5%, Basic; 36.25%, Level 1; 6.25%, Level 2; 12.5%, Level 3. Analysis of responses revealed students: (1) had misconceptions with enlargement which is the least achieved concept; (2) perceived transformations in terms of motion before attending to the properties associated with the transformation; (3) lacked precise vocabulary to describe transformations; (4) had difficulties in relating a matrix to a transformational picture; (5) continually referenced teachers and text as reasons for their solutions; (6) did proofs using particular examples. The textbook analysis showed expository lessons with many worked examples and exercises characterized at Level 1 and Level 2 pertaining to coordinate and matrix system. Also there was an absence of handson activities and applications to real life situations with little opportunity for students to explore, reflect and conjecture., The study has implications for teachereducator in preparing the teachers to provide appropriate learning environments. The implication for the curriculum developer and textbook writer is in restructuring curricula.
Show less  Date Issued
 1989, 1989
 Identifier
 AAI8915764, 3161774, FSDT3161774, fsu:77973
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 The negotiation of social norms in a university mathematics problemsolving class.
 Creator

Trowell, Sandra Davis., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The purpose of this research was to examine the negotiation of social norms in a university mathematics problem solving class. The beliefs and patterns of action which the participants in this class negotiated to define their learning environment were seen as defining the takentobeshared social norms., Each class session was video recorded to accompany field notes. Video recorded interviews were conducted with the instructor after each class session and with four students periodically...
Show moreThe purpose of this research was to examine the negotiation of social norms in a university mathematics problem solving class. The beliefs and patterns of action which the participants in this class negotiated to define their learning environment were seen as defining the takentobeshared social norms., Each class session was video recorded to accompany field notes. Video recorded interviews were conducted with the instructor after each class session and with four students periodically throughout the semester., Lectures were not given nor were procedures imposed. Each learner constructed his/her mathematics and this construction was enhanced by their interaction with other participants in the classroom., The research includes descriptions of each class session, as well as an examination of the beliefs and actions of the instructor and the four students interviewed. In investigating this mathematics class that focused upon mathematics as a sense making activity, opportunities were identified that encouraged mathematical thinking., The set of norms negotiated in this class included collaboration, intellectual autonomy, students devising their own methods, students determining the viability of their solutions rather than the instructor, students initiating the presentation of multiple solutions and ideas, students focusing upon heuristics and strategies rather than answers, and an expectation for all solutions and ideas to make sense even those presented by the instructor. The successful negotiation of these social norms were effective in establishing a rich mathematics learning environment.
Show less  Date Issued
 1994, 1994
 Identifier
 AAI9422473, 3088316, FSDT3088316, fsu:77120
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 The role of graphic representation and students' images in understanding the derivative in calculus: Critical case studies.
 Creator

Aspinwall, Leslie Nolan., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

Calls for reform in the way that calculus is taught stress the importance of instruction focused on graphic as well as analytic representations of functions and derivatives. The value of calculus lies in its potential to reduce complex problems to simple rules and procedures. However, students taught only rules and procedures often emerge from calculus classrooms without the ability to analyze graphs and lack an understanding of the conceptual foundations of the slope of a tangent line. Study...
Show moreCalls for reform in the way that calculus is taught stress the importance of instruction focused on graphic as well as analytic representations of functions and derivatives. The value of calculus lies in its potential to reduce complex problems to simple rules and procedures. However, students taught only rules and procedures often emerge from calculus classrooms without the ability to analyze graphs and lack an understanding of the conceptual foundations of the slope of a tangent line. Study based solely on analytic representations of functions and their derivatives often produces only procedural understanding., In this study, two undergraduate calculus students were confronted with graphic representations for functions and their derivatives and asked to produce graphs that represented their imagestheir unique internal representations. Their attempts to provide external representations of their images provided the data for the study. The purposes of the study are twofold: (1) to contrast the different mathematical understandings of these two students that have been revealed as a result of analyses of their graphic constructs for the derivative function and (2) to present the consequences of an instructional strategy based on graphic representation for functions and derivatives., The study demonstrates that graphic instructional representations for functions and their derivatives, and students' concomitant images, have the potential for producing a richer understanding than that achieved by analytic study alone. Stimulated by graphic instructional representations, students form and can utilize mental images to construct understanding of the calculus derivative and to demonstrate their unique internal mathematical representations.
Show less  Date Issued
 1994, 1994
 Identifier
 AAI9432611, 3088377, FSDT3088377, fsu:77182
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 Semantic construction of relationships in curriculum of algebra II and chemistry.
 Creator

Olson, Jean Kathryn., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The curriculum integration between algebra II and chemistry was investigated during a unit on gas laws. High school students enrolled in both algebra II and chemistry and their teachers participated in the qualitative study. Data were analyzed using a scheme developed from the findings of Lemke and Lampert. Important to the study were linguistic register findings, integration barriers and perceptions held by students., The study examined three areas of analyses of linguistic registers...
Show moreThe curriculum integration between algebra II and chemistry was investigated during a unit on gas laws. High school students enrolled in both algebra II and chemistry and their teachers participated in the qualitative study. Data were analyzed using a scheme developed from the findings of Lemke and Lampert. Important to the study were linguistic register findings, integration barriers and perceptions held by students., The study examined three areas of analyses of linguistic registers including cognitive (personal and within each course), interactive (personal between courses) and negotiation (interactive between students) as questions of how students constructed meaning using their registers were explored., Eleven assertions were constructed that identified areas of problem solving approaches, perceptions of course applications, possibilities of and barriers to course integration, linguistic register findings and student perceptions of curriculum. The assertions were used to enhance understanding of student difficulty in relating knowledge constructed in algebra II for use in construction of knowledge in chemistry., The assertions were used to identify applications and implications for the results of this study that may be applied to teaching and learning algebra II and chemistry.
Show less  Date Issued
 1993, 1993
 Identifier
 AAI9413293, 3088255, FSDT3088255, fsu:77059
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 Student participation and potential learning opportunities in grade three mathematics class discussion.
 Creator

Lo, JaneJane., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

While recent educational reports suggest the need to involve students in active learning, the meaning of student involvement is not clear. The effectiveness of any instructional activity depends on how, why and when the activity is used as well as the beliefs and social norms of the class. A better understanding of mathematics classroom practices is needed in order to give empirical support for educational reforms., The study was conducted in a third grade classroom which used problem...
Show moreWhile recent educational reports suggest the need to involve students in active learning, the meaning of student involvement is not clear. The effectiveness of any instructional activity depends on how, why and when the activity is used as well as the beliefs and social norms of the class. A better understanding of mathematics classroom practices is needed in order to give empirical support for educational reforms., The study was conducted in a third grade classroom which used problem centered learning as the major mathematics instructional strategy. The goal was to describe student participation and potential learning opportunities in mathematics class discussions. Constructivists' views about knowledge, learning, interpretation and communication had profound influence on this study., Participant observation was the primary research tool for collecting data and generating hypotheses, while information from video recording and timely interviews were also used. Furthermore, observations and interviews with four key informants contributed greatly to the investigation on individual constructions of mathematics meaning in class discussion., The major findings of this study are as follows: (1) Third grade students are capable of carrying out and assisting each other to carry out meaningful mathematics dialogues. (2) Class discussion provides potential learning opportunities for students to construct, connect, integrate and reflect on their mathematics knowledge. (3) The negotiation of social norms makes possible the negotiation of mathematics meaning. (4) The meaning of social norms are formed and renegotiated in the social contexts of students attempting to communicate mathematics meaning. (5) Providing students with opportunities to defend and justify their methods appears to be crucial for mathematics meaning., This study has implications for mathematics instruction, research on student learning and the current reform movement. Teacher's and students' beliefs about mathematics and communication are crucial in establishing an appropriate learning environment. I hope that the detailed descriptions and analyses in this dissertation can help educators form an alternative image of classroom practice and reflect on their own beliefs and assumptions on teaching and learning mathematics.
Show less  Date Issued
 1991, 1991
 Identifier
 AAI9132978, 3087616, FSDT3087616, fsu:76432
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 A study of achievement, retention, and transfer resulting from teaching absolute value by two definitional approaches.
 Creator

Yassin, Salaheddin Abed J., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The concept of absolute value is central to several important mathematical topics. Among these are distance, limits, continuity, metric spaces and the square root function. Some studies reveal that students perform surprisingly poorly on problems related to absolute value., Several authors of articles in professional journals have identified a variety of errors, difficulties, and misconceptions arising from attempts to solve sentences involving absolute value., This study compared the results...
Show moreThe concept of absolute value is central to several important mathematical topics. Among these are distance, limits, continuity, metric spaces and the square root function. Some studies reveal that students perform surprisingly poorly on problems related to absolute value., Several authors of articles in professional journals have identified a variety of errors, difficulties, and misconceptions arising from attempts to solve sentences involving absolute value., This study compared the results of two groups of college algebra students studying the solution of absolute value sentences. One group was instructed using the Distance approach, and the other group used the Enhanced Traditional approach. The comparison was made on achievement, retention, and transfer. This research used four intact college algebra classes from four different colleges as the population sample., Four different junior colleges were involved in this study. Two classes of college algebra students at two different junior colleges were assigned to the Distance approach. Two classes from two other junior colleges were assigned to the Enhanced Traditional approach. Each of the four classes took four tests on solving absolute value sentences. Subjects were given a fifty minute pretest on the day the experiment started. Then the instructional materials dealing with the absolute value concept were presented during four fiftyminute lessons. The subjects were given the fifty minute achievement test at the next scheduled class meeting. Two weeks later the retention test was given to each of the four groups., Analysis of covariance was used to test whether there were any significant differences between the two groups on the three tests with the pretest as the covariate. Three null hypotheses of no differences between means scores were rejected at the 0.05 level for the achievement, the retention, the transfer test. In addition, no gender differences were found in this study. We may conclude that students in the Distance approach perform better than the students in the Enhanced Traditional approach in each of the three areas investigated., We found from interviews that most teachers view absolute value as an important part of mathematics. Those contacted supported this view with reference to specific areas of mathematics that draws upon absolute value. The interviews were also valuable in identifying specific diverse difficulties experienced by students studying or using absolute value., Students interviewed from the distance group demonstrated greater competency in solving problems involving absolute value. Not only did they get more correct answers but did so in less time. Several students from the Traditional group found problems too long and boring.
Show less  Date Issued
 1991, 1991
 Identifier
 AAI9212286, 3087737, FSDT3087737, fsu:76547
 Format
 Document (PDF)
 Title
 A study of social interaction processes in mathematical problemsolving partnerships.
 Creator

Erle, Sharon Borntrager., Florida State University
 Abstract/Description

The purpose of this study was to build a descriptive model of socialinteraction processes of natural and artificially imposed student partnerships engaged in mathematical problemsolving activity. The theoretical perspective of this study was based on the sociocognitive model of learning which hypothesizes that cognitively effective social interactions will generate perturbations or disequilibrations in subject's existing knowledge schemes., To enable the development of the model, questions...
Show moreThe purpose of this study was to build a descriptive model of socialinteraction processes of natural and artificially imposed student partnerships engaged in mathematical problemsolving activity. The theoretical perspective of this study was based on the sociocognitive model of learning which hypothesizes that cognitively effective social interactions will generate perturbations or disequilibrations in subject's existing knowledge schemes., To enable the development of the model, questions relating to partnerships roles, differences in problemsolving strategies between partners, and evidence of coordinated problemsolving activity were of particular interest. Through the use of nonroutine mathematics tasks that had the potential of being problematic, an environment for discrepant points of view was provided., The study was conducted in two phases. First a fourth grade class was observed biweekly for a period of eight weeks to document and analyze interaction patterns. Based on the initial observation, two natural dyads and three natural triads were selected for the second phase of the study. In the second phase of the study the selected natural partnerships and researcher imposed artificial partnerships were videotaped in problemsolving sessions where nonroutine mathematics tasks were given to the partnerships. Artificial partnerships were determined through researcher imposed changes in partnership participants based on the observation phase of the study and an initial analysis of the natural partnership videotapes., Major themes that emerged in the qualitative analysis of the data were: gender differences, levels of collaboration, partnership roles, methods of resolving conflict, and effects of setting changes. A synthesis of major themes revealed a descriptive model in which three factors contributed to the level and quality of taskfocused interactions. The three factors were: the type of mathematics task posed, the presence of a socially dominant partner, and the degree of cognitive difference between partners.
Show less  Date Issued
 1992, 1992
 Identifier
 AAI9303346, 3087911, FSDT3087911, fsu:76721
 Format
 Document (PDF)