ERIC Number: ED254409
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985
Reference Count: 0
The Logical Reasoning Necessary to Make Line Graphs.
Wavering, Michael J.
A 3-year study was conducted to determine the logical reasoning processes necessary to construct line graphs. Responses obtained from middle and high school science and mathematics students were classified into one of nine categories. These categories ranged from "no attempt to make a graph" to "complete graph with a statement of a relationship between the variables." The categories in between represented increasingly more successful attempts at ordering data in one and both variables to correct scaling of the data on the axes. Middle school subjects exhibited behaviors mainly in the first four categories, 9th- and 10th-grade subjects overlapped with middle school subjects and the 11th- and 12th-grade subjects in the middle categories, and the 11th- and 12th-grade subjects exhibited behaviors mainly in the last five categories. These response categories also showed a close fit with Piagetian concrete operational structures for single and double seriation and formal operational structures for proportional reasoning and correlational reasoning. Teachers can use this information: (1) to determine what logical reasoning students will bring to a graphing situation; (2) to understand the reasons why students make certain mistakes when they make line graphs; and (3) to make interventions that will help students make their graphs correctly. (Author/JN)
Descriptors: Abstract Reasoning, Elementary School Mathematics, Elementary School Science, Graphs, Intermediate Grades, Logical Thinking, Mathematics Education, Mathematics Instruction, Science Education, Science Instruction, Secondary Education, Secondary School Mathematics, Secondary School Science
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Graphing (Mathematics); Mathematics Education Research; Science Education Research
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (58th, French Lick Springs, IN, April 15-18, 1985).