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ERIC Number: ED562828
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 41
Updating Algebra for All?: Evidence of a Middle-Grades Math Acceleration Policy
Dougherty, Shaun M.; Goodman, Joshua; Hill, Darryl; Litke, Erica; Page, Lindsay
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness
The Wake County Public School System (WCPSS) in North Carolina recently addressed the issue of advancement in and equitable access to advanced mathematics. Under a recent policy, WCPSS uses a SAS-generated predicted probabilities of students' success in obtaining a passing score on the NC Algebra I End-of-Course (EOC) exam, to determine recommended course placement in grades 6 through 8. The authors examine the question: do students who are just eligible for advancement in mathematics in middle school and who participate in advanced mathematics lead to improved academic outcomes compared to students who just miss being eligible for advancement and who do not enroll in advanced mathematics? By focusing on the students on the margin of eligibility under this policy the authors use a regression-discontinuity design to estimate the causal impact of this mathematics acceleration policy on subsequent test scores, grades, and course-taking behavior of middle-school students in Wake County who were exposed to this policy. The results indicate that students on the margin of eligibility and who participate in advanced mathematics in middle school may experience negative effects as a result of being in a peer group of more advanced ability, on average. Tables and figures are appended.
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness. 2040 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208. Tel: 202-495-0920; Fax: 202-640-4401; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education; Middle Schools; Junior High Schools; Intermediate Grades; Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)
Identifiers - Location: North Carolina