Master of Science
Dianna Galante, Ph.D.
Angela Thompson, Ph.D.
Xiaobo She, Ph.D.
This study was designed to determine if innovative strategies such as the use of technology and Supplemental Instruction (SI) could have an impact on students in an introductory statistics course. The study describes the use of a reliable instrument to measure students’ attitudes and beliefs about mathematics. Martha Tapia developed the Attitudes Toward Mathematics Inventory (ATMI) instrument in 1996 and later Lim and Chapman further refined a short form in 2012. The purpose of the ATMI was to measure mathematics attitudes in four ways: (1) enjoyment of mathematics, (2) motivation to do mathematics, (3) self confidence in mathematics, and (4) perceived value of mathematics (Lim & Chapman, 2012). Students took the ATMI assessment on the first day of class. Throughout the semester, incorporated technology such as MyStatLab™, StatCrunch™, and the online Meta-Calculator were an integral part of the statistics classroom. Multiple SI sessions were held weekly for students to attend. At the end of the semester, the students took the ATMI a second time. The study used the statistical analysis of matched-pairs t-test to show the impact of these strategies on the attitudes of college students towards mathematics.
In addition to the ATMI, the study included an additional questionnaire, which showed that a course such as Elementary Statistics, different from other mathematics courses, had a positive impact on the attitudes of students toward mathematics. Students that attended at least one SI session had only positive things to say about how helpful they were. The ATMI results analysis showed significant increases in the enjoyment of mathematics. Furthermore, the attitude of the females in the class showed an increase on 31 of the questions, 25 of which were significant. Overall, there were significant gains from the use of Supplemental Instruction in improving the attitudes of students toward mathematics.
Ryba, Lauren A., "High Impact Strategies and the Effect It Has on Students’ Mathematics Attitudes" (2015). All Student Theses. 68.