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ERIC Number: ED561821
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 167
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3034-5824-8
A Phenomenological Study of the Persistence of Unsuccessful Students in Developmental Mathematics at a Community College
Canfield, Barbara
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Drexel University
There are a large number of students entering college underprepared for college-level mathematics (Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, 2011). While this problem is not new, it has become the focus of national attention because of the impact it has on college completion and workforce development. There is much written in the literature about developmental mathematics; however, there is little research about the experiences of students who find themselves placed into developmental mathematics courses upon entrance into college (Howard & Whitaker, 2011). The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore and articulate the experiences of students at a community college in the Northeast who were unsuccessful in a developmental mathematics course but took the class in a subsequent semester. The research question the study sought to answer is: What characterizes the experiences and perceptions of students who are unsuccessful in a developmental mathematics course and return to repeat it? Data was collected using the following methods: conducting semi-structured in-depth interviews utilizing open-ended questions, classroom observations, and reviewing artifacts such as placement test scores; class attendance records; and class quizzes, tests, and graded assignments. This provided multiple data points allowing for triangulation of the data to ensure the reliability and validity. Member checking was also employed for this purpose. The researcher used bracketing to eliminate any preconceptions and biases during data collection and analysis. Convenience sampling was used to select participants in the study. Students retaking a developmental mathematics course because they earned below a C in a prior attempt comprised the sample. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Two Year Colleges; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A