New IJSME articles

Two more articles have been published online in the International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education:

  • The Factors Related to Preschool Children and Their Mothers on Children’s Intuitional Mathematics Abilities is written by Yildiz Güven. Abstract: The aim of this study is to assess the factors that are related to preschool children and their mothers on children’s’ intuitional mathematics abilities. Results of the study showed that there were significant differences in children’s intuitional mathematics abilities when children are given the opportunity to think intuitionally and to make estimations, and when their mothers believe in the importance of providing such opportunities in the home setting. Children who tended to think fast and to examine details of objects had significantly higher scores. Also, the working mothers aimed to give opportunities to their children more often than non-working mothers. The mothers whose children received preschool education tended to give more opportunities to their children to think intuitionally and to make estimations. When incorrect intuitional answers or estimations were made by children, lower-educated mothers tended to scold their children much more than higher educated mothers. Mothers having at least a university degree explained more often to the children why they were in error than did the less-educated mothers.
  • The Power of Learning Goal Orientation in Predicting Student Mathematics Achievement is written by Chuan-Ju Lin et al. Abstract: The teaching and learning of mathematics in schools has drawn tremendous attention since the education reform in Taiwan. In addition to assessing cognitive abilities, Taiwan Assessment of Student Achievement in Mathematics (TASA-MAT) collects background information to help depict average student achievement in schools in an educational context. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between student achievement in mathematics and student background characteristics. The data for this study was derived from the sample for the 2005 TASA-MAT Sixth-Grade Main Survey in Taiwan. The average age of the sixth-grade students in Taiwan is 11 years old, as was the sample for the 2005 TASA-MAT. Student socioeconomic status (SES) and student learning-goal orientation were specified as predictor variables of student performance in mathematics. The results indicate that the better performance in mathematics tended to be associated with a higher SES and stronger mastery goal orientation. The SES factor accounted for 4.98% of the variance, and student learning-goal orientation accounted for an additional 10.61% of the variance. The major implication obtained from this study was that goal orientation was much more significant than SES in predicting student performance in mathematics. In addition, the Rasch model treatment of the ordinal response-category data is a novel approach to scoring the goal-orientation items, with the corresponding results in this study being satisfactory.

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