Title

An Investigation of the Use and Effects of Instruction Time in Middle School Mathematics Classrooms

Date of Degree

12-2006

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Program

Education

Advisor

Judith Beauford

Advisor

Angela Breidenstein

Advisor

Richard Gray

Advisor

Elizabeth Kreston

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine if classes that employed 90 minutes of daily mathematics teaching in the middle school had any differences in curriculum and teaching practices, overall levels of mathematics anxiety, with regards to testing and class related activities, and performance on the mathematics content area of the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS), when compared to the traditional 45 minute daily classes. Teaching and learning always needs improvement. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) has expressed an interest in obtaining research that will help them continue to improve mathematical education so that students are provided with curriculum that is both challenging and effective. One topic of interest has been the use of instructional time in the mathematics classroom. Teacher data was gathered on curriculum and teaching practices and student data was gathered on their level of mathematics anxiety and the scores they received on the mathematics portion of the TAKS test. Results are displayed in the form of 5 case studies to provide a better understanding of the differences in the two class settings. Results indicate that teachers support the idea of having additional time in the mathematics classroom and those who are in an extended time classroom setting are able to explore mathematics topics with more depth. They have the opportunities to conduct investigations without time constraints and are allotted more time for discussion. There is lower level of mathematics anxiety and an increase in scores for the mathematics portion of the TAKS test for those students in a 90 minute class period.

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