Measuring Two-step Algebra Equation Fluency of Secondary Participants

Open Access
Author:
Ambuka, Tracey L
Graduate Program:
Special Education
Degree:
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
March 30, 2015
Committee Members:
  • Paul J Riccomini, Thesis Advisor
  • Richard M Kubina Jr., Thesis Advisor
  • Kathleen Bieschke, Thesis Advisor
Keywords:
  • algebra
  • fluency
  • two-step algebra equations
  • secondary participants
  • mathematical instruction
  • automaticity
Abstract:
Mathematical fluency is the speed and accuracy of basic addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Fluency in these areas leads to freeing of working memory with the eventual goal of allowing participants to attain the skills needed to complete multi-step problems, work more efficiently, exercise higher order thinking skills, and complete secondary algebra course work. This study examines 131 high school participants with and without disabilities that are enrolled in algebra one classes and measures their fluency in solving two-step algebra equations. Additionally, the study determines if there are commonalities in demographic information and participant history of academic performance that correlate with the participant’s performance on the fluency probes. The data show a connection between the PSSA scores, course grades, and performance on the fluency probes. Implications for practice are to identify specific fluency rates for solving algebraic equations for both participants with and without disabilities, develop fluency measures targeting the solving of algebraic equations, and to recognize the relationship between fluency rates of solving algebraic equations and end of year state assessments for participants in grades 9-12.