in the early 1990s, after a long series of disappointing results on national and international mathematics achievement tests—for example, TIMSS (1998) and NAEP (Campbell, Hombo, and Mazzeo 2000)—the National Science Foundation (NSF) funded the development of thirteen complete mathematics programs at the elementary school, middle school, and secondary school levels.
Thomas R. Post, Debra S. Monson, Edwin Andersen, and Michael R. Harwell
Michael R. Harwell, Thomas R. Post, Amanuel Medhanie, Danielle N. Dupuis, and Brandon LeBeau
This study examined the relationship between high school mathematics curricula and student achievement and course-taking patterns over 4 years of college. Three types of curricula were studied: National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded curricula, the University of Chicago School Mathematics Project curriculum, and commercially developed curricula. The major result was that high school mathematics curricula were unrelated to college mathematics achievement or students' course-taking patterns for students who began college with precalculus (college algebra) or a more difficult course. However, students of the NSF-funded curricula were statistically more likely to begin their college mathematics at the developmental level.
Michael R. Harwell, Thomas R. Post, Yukiko Maeda, Jon D. Davis, Arnold L. Cutler, Edwin Anderson, and Jeremy A. Kahan
The current study examined the mathematical achievement of high school students enrolled for 3 years in one of three NSF funded Standards-based curricula (IMP, CMIC, MMOW). The focus was on traditional topics in mathematics as measured by subtests of a standardized achievement test and a criterion-referenced test of mathematics achievement. Students generally scored at or above the national mean on the achievement subtests. Hierarchical linear modeling results showed that prior mathematics knowledge was a significant but modest predictor of achievement, student SES had a moderate effect, and increasing concentrations of African American students in a classroom were associated with a stronger effect of attendance on achievement. No differences on the standardized achievement subtests emerged among the Standards-based curricula studied once background variables were taken into account. The two suburban districts providing data for the criterion-referenced test achieved well above the national norm.
Thomas R. Post, Amanuel Medhanie, Michael Harwell, Ke Wu Norman, Danielle N. Dupuis, Thomas Muchlinski, Edwin Andersen, and Debra Monson
This retrospective study examined the impact of prior mathematics achievement on the relationship between high school mathematics curricula and student postsecondary mathematics performance. The sample (N = 4,144 from 266 high schools) was partitioned into 3 strata by ACT mathematics scores. Students completing 3 or more years of a commercially developed curriculum, the University of Chicago School Mathematics Project curriculum, or National Science Foundation-funded curriculum comprised the sample. Of interest were comparisons of the difficulty level and grade in their initial and subsequent college mathematics courses, and the number of mathematics courses completed over 8 semesters of college work. In general, high school curriculum was not differentially related to the pattern of mathematics grades that students earned over time or to the difficulty levels of the students' mathematics course-taking patterns. There also was no relationship between high school curricula and the number of college mathematics courses completed.
Thomas R. Post, Michael R. Harwell, Jon D. Davis, Yukiko Maeda, Arnie Cutler, Edwin Andersen, Jeremy A. Kahan, and Ke Wu Norman
Approximately 1400 middle-grades students who had used either the Connected Mathematics Project (CMP) or the MATHThematics (STEM or MT) program for at least 3 years were assessed on two widely used tests, the Stanford Achievement Test, Ninth Edition (Stanford 9) and the New Standards Reference Exam in Mathematics (NSRE). Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) was used to analyze subtest results following methods described by Raudenbush and Bryk (2002). When Standards-based students' achievement patterns are analyzed, traditional topics were learned. Students' achievement levels on the Open Ended and Problem Solving subtests were greater than those on the Procedures subtest. This finding is consistent with results documented in many of the studies reported in Senk and Thompson (2003), and other sources.