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Eric.ed.gov – Algebra for All: The Effect of Algebra Coursework and Classroom Peer Academic Composition on Low-Achieving Students

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Algebra is often considered as a gateway for later achievement. A recent report by the Mathematics Advisory Panel (2008) underscores the importance of improving algebra learning in secondary school. Today, a growing number of states and districts require algebra for all students in ninth grade or earlier. Chicago is at the forefront of this movement. Many low-achieving students took remedial math before 1997 and the algebra-for-all policy immersed these students in academic coursework for the first time. Moreover, these low-achieving students experienced a rise in the ability levels of their classroom peers. However, this study suggests that simply requiring algebra is insufficient to improve their outcomes, even though students may benefit from having higher achieving peers in their classrooms. Overall, taking Algebra, instead of remedial math, would have no significant effect and this may be because students lack sufficient skills to handle algebra. Chicago subsequently implemented double-dose algebra to address this problem, and research showed that offering extended instructional time and instructional supports to teachers was successful in improving algebra learning of low achieving students (Nomi and Allensworth, 2009; 2010). Table and figures are appended.

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Troels Gannerup Christensen

Jeg er ansat som adjunkt hos Læreruddannelsen i Jelling, hvor jeg underviser i matematik, specialiseringsmodulet teknologiforståelse, praktik m.m. Jeg har tidligere været ansat som pædagogisk konsulent i matematik og tysk hos UCL ved Center for Undervisningsmidler (CFU) i Vejle og lærer i udskolingen (7.-9. klasse) på Lyshøjskolen i Kolding. Jeg er ejer af og driver bl.a. hjemmesiderne www.lærklokken.dk og www.iundervisning.dk, ggbkursus.dk og er tidligere fagredaktør på matematik på emu.dk. Jeg går ind for, at læring skal være let tilgængelig og i størst mulig omfang gratis at benytte.

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