Investigating secondary students beliefs about mathematical problem-solving

Mark Prendergast, Cormac Breen, Aibhin Bray, Fiona Faulkner, Brian Carroll, Dominic Quinn, Michael Carr
2018 International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology  
Many studies over the past thirty years have highlighted the important role of students' beliefs for successful problem solving in mathematics. Given the recent emphasis afforded to problem solving on the reformed Irish secondary school mathematics curriculum, the main aim of this study was to identify Irish students' (n = 975) beliefs about the field. A quantitative measure of these beliefs was attained through the use of the Indiana Mathematical Belief Scale, an existing thirty item (five
more » ... e) self-report questionnaire. A statistical analysis of the data revealed that students who were further through their secondary education had a stronger belief that not all problems could be solved by applying routine procedures. In contrast, the same students held less positive beliefs than their younger counterparts that they could solve time-consuming problems and that conceptual understanding was important. The analysis also indicated that gender had a significant impact on three of the five belief scales.
doi:10.1080/0020739x.2018.1440325 fatcat:euukqevlc5drpg6o6g22frm2ju