ERIC Number: ED049056
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1971-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Strategies in Learning Mathematical Structures, A Brief Report of the Study.
Branca, Nicholas A.
This study was undertaken to test the findings of Dienes and Jeeves concerning the strategies used by students to learn mathematical structures. The study also proposed to determine whether students are consistent across structures and embodiments in the strategies they use and the evaluations they give. One hundred adolescent girls were given three experimental tasks in game playing situations. In each task the student manipulated an apparatus that embodied a mathematical structure. The goal was to learn the rules of the game so as to make correct predictions about the outcome of each move. The first task, a Color Game, had been used by Dienes and Jeeves and was based on the Klein group. Task two, a Map Game, had a network structure. The third task, a Light Game, also embodied the Klein group. Students' evaluations of how the game was played for the two group structure tasks fell into three categories--operator, pattern, or memory. Evaluations of the network structure game were categorized depending on whether the student focused on parts of the network or considered it as a whole. The sequence of a student's moves on each task was taken as a measure of the strategy she was using. Findings supported Dienes and Jeeves conclusions that the distribution of evaluations is ordered in decreasing frequency of occurrence as pattern, memory, operator and in decreasing efficiency as measured by the length of play as operator, pattern, memory. [Not available in hardcopy due to marginal legibility of original document.] (Author/CT)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA.
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (49th, April 14-17, 1971, Anaheim, California)