Capstone/Dissertation Title

Effects of Engagement Strategies on Learning in Algebra and Geometry Classrooms

Term

Summer 7-29-2015

Capstone

Thesis

Degree Name

MAEd

Primary Advisor/Dissertation Chair

Laura Halldin

Secondary Advisor/Reader One

Mary Hoffman

Peer-Reviewer/Reader Two

Sheila Stormont

Abstract

This capstone addresses the question, “How can understanding of high school mathematics be improved through active engagement strategies?” The research incorporated qualitative and quantitative methods to document the effects of specific engagement strategies on high school students’ learning of Algebra and Geometry content. The students included were both native English speakers and English Learners (ELs) at varying levels of language proficiency. Throughout a semester-long research period the author incorporated various engagement strategies with an emphasis on teacher-created guided notes used for both encoding information at the point of instruction and storing information for later review. Related literature was used to validate the specific strategies used and the way they were implemented. Results indicated an increase in student engagement during class time, more positive student attitudes toward class participation and homework completion, and a preference for teacher-created guided notes over no provided note-taking structure.

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