Using assessment to individualize early mathematics instruction

Carol Mc Donald Connor, Michèle M.M. Mazzocco, Terri Kurz, Elizabeth C. Crowe, Elizabeth L. Tighe, Taffeta S. Wood, Frederick J. Morrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Accumulating evidence suggests that assessment-informed personalized instruction, tailored to students’ individual skills and abilities, is more effective than more one-size-fits-all approaches. In this study, we evaluate the efficacy of Individualizing Student Instruction in Mathematics (ISI-Math) compared to Reading (ISI-Reading) where classrooms were randomly assigned to ISI-Math or ISI-Reading. The literature on child characteristics X instruction or skill X treatment interaction effects point to the complexities of tailoring instruction for individual students who present with constellations of skills. Second graders received mathematics instruction in small flexible learning groups based on their assessed learning needs. Results of the study (n = 32 teachers, 370 students) revealed significant treatment effects on standardized mathematics assessments. With effect sizes (d) of 0.41–0.60, we show that we can significantly improve 2nd graders’ mathematics achievement, including for children living in poverty, by using assessment data to individualize the mathematics instruction they receive. The instructional regime, ISI-Math, was implemented by regular classroom teachers and it led to about a 4-month achievement advantage on standardized mathematics tests when compared to students in control classrooms. These results were realized within one school year. Moreover, treatment effects were the same regardless of school-level poverty and students’ gender, initial mathematics or vocabulary scores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-113
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of school psychology
Volume66
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank the entire ISI Project team, including Barry Fishman and Christopher Schatschneider, as well as the children, parents, teachers, and school administrators without whom this research would not have been possible. We also acknowledge the contributions of Leigh McLean to an early version of this manuscript. This study was funded by “Child by Instruction Interactions: Effects of Individualizing Instruction” grant R01HD48539 and grant R21HD062834 from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development ; and by grants R305H04013 and R305B070074 , R305A130517 / R305A160404 and, in part, R305F100027 from the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences . The opinions expressed are ours and do not represent views of the funding agencies. ISI-Math is not currently commercially available although, as developers of the program, Dr. Crowe and Dr. Connor may have a potential conflict of interest in the future. Appendix A

Funding Information:
We would like to thank the entire ISI Project team, including Barry Fishman and Christopher Schatschneider, as well as the children, parents, teachers, and school administrators without whom this research would not have been possible. We also acknowledge the contributions of Leigh McLean to an early version of this manuscript. This study was funded by ?Child by Instruction Interactions: Effects of Individualizing Instruction? grant R01HD48539 and grant R21HD062834 from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; and by grants R305H04013 and R305B070074, R305A130517/R305A160404 and, in part, R305F100027 from the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences. The opinions expressed are ours and do not represent views of the funding agencies. ISI-Math is not currently commercially available although, as developers of the program, Dr. Crowe and Dr. Connor may have a potential conflict of interest in the future.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Society for the Study of School Psychology

Keywords

  • Elementary Education
  • Individualize Child Differences
  • Instruction
  • Mathematics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Using assessment to individualize early mathematics instruction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this