2019 CoNECD - The Collaborative Network for Engineering and Computing Diversity

Numeracy: Preparing Students for Success in Algebra

Presented at Track: Pre-college - Technical Session 3

Algebra has been universally accepted as a gateway skill. It is a bridge to high-level math course: Geometry, Algebra II, Trigonometry and Pre-Calculus and Calculus. Students who take an Algebra course by the 8th grade are more likely to pursue careers in Engineering and other STEM fields. Students who take Algebra by the 8th grade will be able to take a Calculus course while in high school. Students who are exposed to Calculus in High School generally are more successful in their first-year mathematics courses in college.

Algebra by 7th Grade (AB7G) has been launched as a pilot program from NAMEPA, hosted by the University of Cincinnati and Purdue University. The program begins with students in the 3rd grade and continues each year until the 7th grade where the students are exposed to Algebra and hands on projects. The students’ progress and test scores are tracked and monitored.

Our pilot sites meet two Saturdays of each month. All participants are required to have access to the Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces (ALEKS) web-based student assessment system or a similar software program. The system can measure which skills the student has mastered and skills in which the students need more practice and training. Staff and volunteers also supplement the ALEKS training with hands-on lessons and activities designed to further challenge and engage the students.

Successes and opportunities for improvement, data and next steps will be shared in the conference paper.

Authors
  1. Dr. Whitney Gaskins University of Cincinnati [biography]
  2. Dr. Darryl Dickerson Purdue University, West Lafayette [biography]
  3. Ms. Virginia Lynn Booth-Womack Purdue University, West Lafayette [biography]
  4. Mr. Delano White The Gaskins Foundation
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