Identifier

etd-07032013-084444

Degree

Master of Natural Sciences (MNS)

Department

Natural Sciences (Interdepartmental Program)

Document Type

Thesis

Abstract

This study was conducted to investigate the disparity that seems to exist in students’ abilities to solve equations, solve word problems, and model word problems with algebraic equations. Over the course of fourteen-weeks, students enrolled in an advanced seventh grade mathematics course were given a series of algebra assignments, tasks, and surveys that focused on students’ abilities to solve and write algebraic equations. The results show that students are more competent in determining solutions for equations and simple word problems than modeling word problems with algebraic equations. Students were willing to exert substantial effort to use arithmetic procedures to find solutions, but were not as invested in writing the equations. This study also shows that students have difficulty relating known and unknown quantities algebraically. Our results suggests, classroom instruction should be focused on bridging the conceptual gaps that exist within solving equations, solving word problems, and modeling with algebraic equations.

Date

2013

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Madden, James

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