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Correlations between cognitive attainment in mathematics of junior high school and senior high school students and the college mathematics backgrounds of their student teachers
This study investigated correlations between selected components of the mathematics background of secondary student teachers teaching pre-algebra courses and those teaching algebra and post-algebra courses and the cognitive attainment of their students. Method. Student teachers were placed in schools in and around Bryan, Texas for one semester. The student teachers' instructional responsibilities increased weekly to a point when they had complete responsibility. For the last two weeks they instructed from a performance objective based unit approved by both the classroom supervising teaching and a university supervisor. The percentage of objectives attained on an examination was the measure of cognitive attainment. The measures of student teachers' mathematics background were, first the grade point ratios earned in college mathematics courses partitioned by level of content, and second, the number of semester hours completed in mathematics. Results. (1) The cognitive attainment of students in pre-algebra secondary mathematics courses correlated significantly (p = .09) and positively (r = .63) with the grade point ratio in college pre-calculus courses. (2) The cognitive attainment of the students in algebra and succeeding courses correlated significantly (p = .003) and positively (r = .80) with the grade earned in the geometry course. Correlations with the grade point ratios in other groups of junior or senior mathematics courses were positive (.47 [less than or equal to] p [less than or equal to] .48) with less than significant probability values (.11 (less than or equal to] p [less than or equal to] .25). (3) The cognitive attainment of all the students in the study correlated significantly (p = .06) and positively (r = .41) with the number of semester hours in college mathematics completed by the student teacher. Conclusions. The results of this study suggests the following: (1) the number of semester hours in college mathematics correlates with student achievement in secondary mathematics. (2) the teacher's grade point ratio in pre-calculus courses correlates with the achievement of the teacher's students in pre-algebra courses, and, (3) the teacher's grade point ratio in courses beyond calculus correlates with student achievement in algebra and post-algebra.
SubjectMajor curriculum and instruction
1986 Dissertation T668
Study and teaching (Secondary)
Tooke, Derrell James (1986). Correlations between cognitive attainment in mathematics of junior high school and senior high school students and the college mathematics backgrounds of their student teachers. Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Libraries. Available electronically from
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