The effects of types, quantity, and quality of questioning in improving students' understanding
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This research is based on the Middle School Mathematics Project (MSMP) funded by the Interagency Educational Research Initiative (IERI) through a grant to the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Both teachers’ video lessons and students’ pre-and-post test scores were used to investigate the effects of teachers’ types, quality, and quantity of questioning students’ knowledge of algebra concepts and skills in variables, change, equality, and equations in middle school students in seventh and eighth grades. The study further explored the relationship between types of questioning, quality of questioning, and quantity of questioning. Later, teachers’ intention of asking two types of questions, probing and guiding, and teachers’ questioning acquisition methods were studied through face-to-face teacher interviews. This dissertation used a mixed approach utilizing both quantitative and qualitative methods. The data were collected from 33 teachers in two different states, Texas and Delaware, who participated in the IERI project either during the 2002-2003, the 2003- 2004, or the 2004-2005 school years. A total of 103 videotapes were obtained consisting of one to five lessons for each teacher. The teachers used one of four different textbooks: MathThematics (Billstein, et al., 1999), Connected Mathematics (Lappan, et al., 1998), Mathematics: Applications and Connections Glencoe Algebra (Collins, et al., 1998), or Mathematics in Context (MiC) (Romberg, et al., 1998). The results showed that teachers’ quality of probing questions affected students’ achievements when other variables--teachers’ teaching experience, textbook, and teachers’ math preparation--were controlled. It was also found that AAAS’ two highest rated two textbooks, CMP and MiC, affected students’ understanding. Moreover, teachers’ math preparation predicted student performance. Furthermore, quality and quantity of guiding questions and probing questions were significantly correlated with each other (p < 0.01). For the qualitative part, it was found that teachers’ were asking what they intended to ask. In other words, they were aware of the role of questioning they were using. Also, there were several methods that seemed to be more used when acquiring questioning skills- -watching and observing teachers, being in the field or from student-teacher experience, and workshops.
Sahin, Alpaslan (2007). The effects of types, quantity, and quality of questioning in improving students' understanding. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from