This PDF file presents a chapter of Mathematics Curriculum: Issues, Trends, and Future Directions (72nd Yearbook) in a downloadable file that preserves the design and layout of the book while allowing users to search and print selected pages.
Chapter 24: The Influence of Curriculum on Students’ Learning. Mary Kay Stein and Margaret S. Smith (University of Pittsburgh) review research that fosters insight into the influence of curriculum on student learning, often called curricular effectiveness. The pattern of findings associated with the comparative, mostly quantitative, research summarized suggests that the differences between National Science Foundation (NSF)–funded and publisher-generated curricula matter, at least in how much computational and conceptual knowledge students gain. Students in NSF-funded curricula tend to “keep up” with their counterparts in publisher-generated curricula in computational knowledge but to surpass them in conceptual knowledge and their ability to solve nonroutine problems. However, all students tend to do best on tests that align with their curriculum format, leading to a slight edge for students learning under publisher-generated curricula on traditional standardized tests and a more considerable edge for students in NSF-funded curricula on measures of thinking, reasoning, and problem solving.
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