Minnesota Mathematics Achievement Project (MNMAP)

Research Studies

Download a PDF of the presentation from the April 2009 NCTM Annual Conference summarizing two of the five studies by the MNMAP.

Post, T.R., Medhanie, A., Harwell, M., Norman, K.W., Dupuise, D. N., Muchlinski, T., Anderson, E., Monson, D. (2010). The Impact of Prior Mathematics Achievement on the Relationship Between High School Mathematics Curricula and Post-Secondary Mathematics Performance, Course-Taking, and Persistence, Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, Vol. 41, No. 3, 274-308.

This retrospective study examined the impact of prior mathematics achievement on the relationship between high school mathematics curricula and student postsecondary mathematics performance. The sample (N = 4,144 from 266 high schools) was partitioned into 3 strata by ACT mathematics scores. Students completing 3 or more years of a commercially developed, University of Chicago School Mathematics Project, or National Science Foundation-funded curriculum comprised the sample. Of interest were comparisons of the difficult level and grade in their initial and subsequent college mathematics courses, and the number of mathematics courses completed over 8 semesters of college work. In general, high school curriculum was not differentially related to the pattern of mathematics grades that students earned over time or to the difficulty levels of the students' mathematics course-taking patterns. There also was no relationship between high school curricula and the number of college mathematics courses completed.

Harwell, M., Post, T.R., Maeda, Y., Davis, J., Cutler, A., Anderson, E., Kahan, J.A. (2007). Standards-based Mathematics Curricula and Secondary Students' Performance on Standardized Achievement Tests, Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, Vol. 38, No. 1, 71-101.

The current study examined the mathematical achievement of high school students enrolled for 3 years in one of the three NSF funded Standards-based curricula (IMP, CMIC, MMOW). The focus was on traditional topics in mathematics as measured by subtests of a standardized achievement test and a criterion-referenced test of mathematics achievement. Students generally scored at or above the national mean on the achievement subtests. Hierarchical linear modeling results showed that prior mathematics knowledge was a significant but modest predictor of achievement, student SES had a moderate effect, and increasing concentrations of African American students in a classroom were associated with a stronger effect of attendance on achievement. No differences on the standardized achievement subtests emerged among the Standards-based curricula studied once background variables were taken into account. The two suburban districts providing data for the criterion-referenced test achieved well above the national norm.

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