Maine Center for Research in STEM Education
(RiSE Center) Colloquia & Seminar Series
Department of Exercise Science and STEM Education
Maine RiSE Center, University of Maine
Differentiated student thinking while solving
a distance vs. time graph problem
This study probes the thinking of students at different stages of mathematical experience: college students who have taken calculus; college students who have not taken calculus; current high school mathematics teachers; graduate students in a discipline-based mathematics education program. The study asks:
- what is the nature of student thinking when solving a distance/time graph problem?
- do students with different levels of mathematical experience solve graph problems differently from each other?
Using a covariational framework (Carlson, Jacobs, Coe, Larsen & Hsu, 2002), preliminary data reveal many students have difficulty working with phenomena that display varying rates of change. Data also indicate many students estimate answers, even when an exact answer is possible. Data were collected via written surveys and semi-structured oral interviews. This work builds on, yet diverges from, prior research in physics education (McDermott, Rosenquist & van Zee, 1987; Thornton & Sokoloff, 1990; Kim & Kim, 2005), and mathematics education (Chiu, Kessel, Moschkovich & Munch-Nunez, 2001; Moschkovich, 1996) that describes difficulties students have with graph interpretation.
Monday, April 7, 2014
Arthur St. John Hill Auditorium, 165 Barrows Hall