ERIC Number: ED462481
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001
Taking Mathematics in High School: Is Opportunity Equal? Publication Series.
Finn, Jeremy D.; Gerber, Susan B.; Wang, Margaret C.
This study investigated high school policies and practices that encourage or discourage students' enrollment in advanced mathematics courses, examining the effects of schools' graduation requirements, course offerings, and tracking practices on patterns of mathematics courses taken by high school students. Data came from the High School Transcript Study and the 1994 National Assessment of Educational Progress. Data were collected on over 25,000 high school students from 340 schools nationwide. Results indicated that larger schools offered more advanced mathematics courses, while mathematics course offerings in small, rural schools (both high- and low-poverty rural schools) were substantially below those of schools in other settings. There were no systematic differences between high- and low-poverty schools in number of advanced courses offered or proportion of advanced courses. School polices and practices affected students' course taking differentially within schools. Graduation requirements affected the number of courses students took and had a stronger impact on students in vocational tracks. Course taking in mathematics did not relate to school enrollment. There was a significant association of course taking with school poverty level. All measures of course taking showed large, significant differences among tracks. (Contains 54 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Advanced Courses, Course Selection (Students), Equal Education, Family Characteristics, Graduation Requirements, High School Students, High Schools, Institutional Characteristics, Mathematics Education, Minority Group Children, Poverty, Racial Differences, School Policy, Student Characteristics, Track System (Education)
For full text: http://www.temple.edu/LSS/pubseries2001-1.pdf.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.; National Center for Education Statistics (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Mid-Atlantic Lab. for Student Success, Philadelphia, PA.
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: Portions of paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 24-28, 2000).