A phenomenological exploration of the influence of mathematical experience on the development of mathematical beliefs of middle school students with emotional disturbance
Mirabella Ormsby, Lauren
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In the United States the lack of mathematic knowledge of citizens has remained a significant problem. Both national and international assessments of mathematical knowledge of students have consistently reported poor results. Given the importance of mathematics education in college attendance and career options, finding ways to improve the mathematical knowledge of students in the United States is a critical concern. One group consistently underperforming in mathematics is students with emotional disturbance (ED). According to the National Math Advisory Panel (NMAP), additional research addressing the social, affective and motivational factors associated with mathematics learning and performance is needed. A qualitative multiple case study design was used to examine the experiences students with ED in two different math placements. Semi-structured interviews, participant observation and document review informed the current study. The selection of instructional strategies, the classroom environment and parental engagement emerged as common sources in the development of the students' self-efficacy beliefs, beliefs about their ability in math and the value they placed on math. Recommendations for middle school math teachers of students with ED are provided.
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