The University of Montana
Department of Mathematical Sciences

Technical report #10/2008

Tracing Studentís modeling processes in school

Nicholas Mousoulides
The University of Cyprus

Bharath Sriraman
The University of Montana

Marios Pittalis & Constantinos Christou
The University of Cyprus


Abstract

In this study we report on an analysis of the mathematization processes of one 6th and one 8th grade group, with emphasis on the similarities and differences between the two groups in solving a modeling problem. Results provide evidence that all students developed the necessary mathematical constructs and processes to actively solve the problem through meaningful problem solving. Eighth graders were involved in a higher level of understanding the problem presented in the activity, employed more sophisticated mathematical concepts and operations, better validated and communicated their results and reached more efficient models. Finally, a reflection on the differences in the diversity and sophistication of the constructed models and mathematization processes between the two groups raises issues regarding the design and implementation of modeling activities in elementary and lower secondary school level.

Keywords: Achievement differences; Cyprus; mathematizaton; Mathematical modeling

AMS Subject Classification: 97

Download Technical Report: pdf (69 KB) 

Pre-print of chapter to appear in R. Lesh., P. Galbraith., W. Blum., and A. Hurford (Eds). Education and the Design Sciences. Springer Science and Business