An investigation into the development of mathematical modelling competencies of grade 7 learners.

Biccard, Piera (Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch, 2010-12)

Thesis (MEd (Curriculum Studies))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Mathematical modelling is becoming a popular teaching and learning approach in mathematics education. There is however a need within the modelling domain to identify exactly what modelling competencies are and how these competencies develop. This study examines how mathematical modelling competencies develop in Grade 7 students working in groups. Modelling is placed in the field of mathematics teaching and learning as a significant means of learning mathematics. Modelling competencies are identified and characterised from existing literature and explored through empirical generation and collection of data. The study is qualitative in nature and uses a mixed approach of design research and some aspects of grounded theory. Students’ progress through a modelling program is documented while the modelling competencies of students stereotyped as weak and strong are also investigated. The findings firmly support earlier research that competencies do develop in students who are exposed to modelling. A comprehensive picture of the modelling situation is presented since this study merges competencies from other studies into a detailed analysis of the modelling situation - it presents an authentic modelling situation of students working in groups and furthers the discussion on modelling competencies. The analysis of the data suggests that the development of modelling competencies is complex and interrelated but that competencies do develop progressively in groups involved in modelling tasks. Recommendations for additional studies include studies of a longer duration and a full investigation into the link between modelling and language ability.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Wiskundige modellering is besig om ‘n populêre onderrig- en studiebenadering in wiskundeonderwys te word. Daar is egter ‘n behoefte om die modelleringsbevoegdhede te identifiseer in hierdie veld en om te weet hoe hierdie bevoegdhede ontwikkel. Hierdie studie ondersoek watter bevoegdhede in wiskundige modellering by Gr.7 studente wat in groepe saamwerk ontwikkel. Modellering is in die studieveld van wiskundeonderrig en -leer geplaas as 'n betekenisvolle leerwyse in wiskunde. Modelleringsbevoegdhede word vanuit bestaande literatuur en navorsing geïdentifiseer en beskryf deur empiriese generering en versameling van data. Die studie is kwalitatief van aard en gebruik ‘n gemengde benadering van ontwikkelingsondersoek en sekere aspekte van begronde teorie. Studente se vordering in die modelleringsprogram is gedokumenteer terwyl die modelleringsbevoegdhede van gestereotipeerde swak en sterk studente ook ondersoek is. Die resultate bevestig vroeëre navorsing dat bevoegdhede ontwikkel word deur studente wat blootgestel is aan modellering. ‘n Omvattende beeld van die modelleringsituasie is in hierdie studie aangebied waardeur modelleringsbevoegdhede, soos geïdentifiseer in ander studies, tot ‘n gedetailleerde analise van die modelleringsituasie saamgevoeg word. Dit verteenwoordig dus ‘n outentieke modelleringsituasie van studente wat in groepe saamwerk en bevorder so die gesprek oor modelleringsbevoegdhede. Die analise van die data suggereer dat die ontwikkeling van modelleringsbevoegdhede kompleks en geïntegreerd is, en dat bevoegdhede progressief ontwikkel in groepe wat betrokke is by modelleringstake. Aanbevelings vir addissionele studies sluit langer ondersoektydperke in en 'n dieper ondersoek na die verband tussen modellering en taalvaardigheid.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/5301
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