7th-grade students’ typical errors and possible misconceptions in graphs concept before and after the regular mathematics instruction

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2011
Tortop, Tuğba
The purpose of this study was to investigate 7th-grade students’ typical errors and possible misconceptions in graphs concept before and after the regular mathematics instruction. The study was conducted in an elementary school in the 2nd semester of 2009-2010 academic year in Afyonkarahisar. A mathematics teacher and 71 7th-grade students participated in the study. The data were collected through achievement tests administered to the students before and after the instruction and interviews conducted with the teachers and the selected eight students based on the results of the pretest and posttest. The teacher’s instruction was also observed. Students were not exposed to a special treatment, but rather the influence of regular mathematics instruction on a group of 7th-grade students from the four classes taught by the same teacher was investigated. The results of data analysis indicated that 7th-grade students had common typical errors and possible misconceptions about the usage, construction, reading, and interpretation of line, bar, and circle graphs before and after the regular instruction. The comparison of pretest and posttest results showed that while there were differences between the students’ errors and misconceptions in pretest and posttest, some misconceptions were decreased or increased, or did not change from pretest to posttest. The interviews conducted with the selected students addressed that the students had errors and misconceptions in graphs concept. Findings of the observation of teacher’s instruction showed that the teacher did not fully discover and prevent students’ typical errors and possible misconceptions. Moreover, the findings of the interview conducted with the teacher indicated that her knowledge of students’ errors and misconceptions were limited. The results of this study showed that teachers’ planning was important in understanding students’ typical errors and possible misconceptions. Inservice training of teachers should put more emphasize in effective planning and understanding students’ typical errors and possible misconceptions.
Citation Formats
T. Tortop, “7th-grade students’ typical errors and possible misconceptions in graphs concept before and after the regular mathematics instruction,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2011.