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ERIC Number: ED573309
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 16
The Concept of Generalised Number: Valuable Lessons from the History of Algebra
Nataraj, Mala S.; Thomas, Michael O. J.
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia, Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia (MERGA) (35th, Singapore, Jul 2-6, 2012)
The importance of understanding the various uses of the literal symbol in algebra, and in particular the idea of generalised number, is well documented in the literature. Many research findings have also reported student difficulties with this vital and central concept. This research study examines the use of a combination of historical and educational research ideas as a way of enhancing students' understanding of generalised number. The results suggest that this approach helped some students to make some generalisations and to understand the difference between specific unknown and generalised number.
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia. GPO Box 2747, Adelaide SA 5001, Australia. Tel: +61-8-8363-0288; Fax: +61-8-8362-9288; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand