Study Shows Cancelled Math Program Improves Test Scores

4 years 1 month 1 week ago Monday, November 04 2013 Nov 4, 2013 Monday, November 04, 2013 10:58:00 AM CST November 04, 2013 in News
By: Brynne Whittaker, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - A three-year study led by two MU professors shows that high school students enrolled in math courses covering a variety of topics--algebra, geometry and statistics--instead of separate, single subject courses perform better on standardized tests.  The study surveyed 3,000 high school students from around the nation. MU math education professor James Tarr said the study showed a significant improvement in student learning in what are called "integrated math" classrooms.  

"Students who studied from an integrated curriculum out performed those who studied in a more traditional sequence," Tarr said.  

Not only are test scores higher, but Columbia integrated math students said an integrated curriculum relates math to real-life situations.

"It works better for me. Instead of giving me an equation and having to memorize it and then just doing it, repetition until it's beaten into you," Rock Bridge High School junior Samuel Gurnsey said.  "You do a lot more deriving of equations, so you take the information and the book helps you work through and sometimes you even find that you'll be several steps ahead in one problem because it's just working you through the thought process."

Another student said the classroom environment is what improves student learning. 

"I like that we are with the same people usually throughout our years here, so I've been able to get close to people that I wouldn't have been close to," Rock Bridge High School junior Renata Williams said. 

Despite good reviews from students in the courses, in June 2012, the Columbia School Board decided to phase out the integrated math curriculum for a variety of reasons, the most prominent being low enrollment. About two percent of Columbia high-schoolers are currently enrolled in integrated math

CPS math coordinator Dana Hibbard said low enrollment may be because people are afraid to try a course that sounds different.

"We would all like to see our scores change, but the problem seems to be inherent in the fact that there is a fear when what we do in classrooms change," Hibbard said. 

 Integrated math teacher Marla Clowe said the format of standardized tests could also be to blame.

"Just the fact that standardized tests have always been so skill-oriented and about speed and basically memorization of facts [could be to the cause]," Clowe said.  "Take the ACT. It's 60 questions in 60 minutes. It's about speed and repetition, whereas integrated curriculum more is about thought-provoking questions that take a longer time, and you don't automatically have an answer in 30 seconds or 60 seconds."

Both integrated and traditional math curricula currently taught in Columbia classrooms meet the state's core standards.  Students enrolled in integrated math will finish out their last year or two in the program, but by fall of 2015, the curriculum will not be offered.  

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The director of the Missouri Veterans Commission has resigned amid complaints about care at the St.... More >>
5 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 10:37:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
SALINE COUNTY - Former Columbia Police officer Rob Sanders will head back to the courtroom in May 2018 as he... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 10:03:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
The St. Louis Cardinals have acquired outfielder Marcell Ozuna from the Miami Marlins. The deal is pending a physical. ... More >>
6 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 9:41:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in Sports
COLUMBIA - Today the Federal Communications Commission will vote on a plan to repeal net neutrality and librarians worry this... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 8:44:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in Continuous News
AUDRAIN COUNTY - The man who was found on Audrain Road 913 Tuesday next to a crashed car died of... More >>
7 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 8:32:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
MOBERLY - Missouri law enforcement is impeded by a number of issues in cases involving child sexual abuse. Alleged... More >>
8 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 8:20:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in Target 8
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Chamber of Commerce hosted the ninth and final public hearing by the 21st Century Missouri Transportation... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 7:12:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Federal Communications Commission vote to repeal net neutrality is fast approaching. The vote to remove regulations that... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 7:12:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Justice Reinvestment Task Force took a big step Wednesday when it comes to addressing mental health,... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 6:53:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - As Columbia Regional Airport plans to expand, it got a push from Mayor Brian Treece. Treece called... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 6:37:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri is among the worst states nationwide at preventing its young people from smoking and using tobacco, according... More >>
10 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 6:15:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri American Water is making changes to the aging Jefferson City Treatment Plant with the goal of... More >>
10 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 5:33:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
Update: Police Chief Ken Burton talked a little bit about the Old Hawthorne homicide at the Citizens Police Review Board... More >>
10 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 5:32:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Many people accused of crimes are languishing in county jails as the Missouri State Public Defender System... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 5:06:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in Target 8
The Geminid meteor shower begins Wednesday night and viewing conditions may be the best in several years! This annual... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 4:47:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
AUDRAIN COUNTY- A fire burned down a home and a truck on Wednesday while the owner was away in Moberly... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 4:45:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
POPLAR BLUFF (AP) — A city official in the southeast Missouri town of Poplar Bluff faces criminal charges for... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 4:07:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Authorities have given the all clear after investigating a possible explosive device around the Hearnes Center shuttle bus... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, December 13 2017 Dec 13, 2017 Wednesday, December 13, 2017 3:53:00 PM CST December 13, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 30°
5am 31°
6am 29°
7am 27°
8am 27°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

4:00a
Early Today
4:30a
KOMU 8 News Today
5:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
4:00a
Paid Program
4:30a
Paid Program
5:00a
Paid Program

Tonight's Schedule

6:30p
Football Night in Indianapolis
7:20p
Thursday Night Football
7:00p
iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2017
8:30p
Whose Line Is It Anyway?
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld