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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Language
  • English
Subject
Date Range
2012 2019


The mathematics test is the most difficult test in the GED (General Education Development) Test battery, largely due to the presence of story problems. Raising performance levels of story problem-solving would have a significant effect on GED Test passage rates. The subject of this formative research study is Ms. Stephens’ Categorization Practice Utility (MS-CPU), an example-tracing intelligent tutoring system that serves as practice for the first step (problem categorization) in a larger comprehensive story problem-solving pedagogy that purports to raise the level of story problem-solving performance. During the analysis phase of this project, knowledge components and particular competencies that enable …

Contributors
Ritchey, ChristiAnne Stephens, VanLehn, Kurt, Savenye, Wilhelmina, et al.
Created Date
2018

This thesis focuses on sequencing questions in a way that provides students with manageable steps to understand some of the fundamental concepts in discrete mathematics. The questions are aimed at younger students (middle and high school aged) with the goal of helping young students, who have likely never seen discrete mathematics, to learn through guided discovery. Chapter 2 is the bulk of this thesis as it provides questions, hints, solutions, as well as a brief discussion of each question. In the discussions following the questions, I have attempted to illustrate some relationships between the current question and previous questions, explain …

Contributors
Bell, Stephanie, Fishel, Susana, Hurlbert, Glenn, et al.
Created Date
2014

Teachers must recognize the knowledge they possess as appropriate to employ in the process of achieving their goals and objectives in the context of practice. Such recognition is subject to a host of cognitive and affective processes that have thus far not been a central focus of research on teacher knowledge in mathematics education. To address this need, this dissertation study examined the role of a secondary mathematics teacher’s image of instructional constraints on his enacted subject matter knowledge. I collected data in three phases. First, I conducted a series of task-based clinical interviews that allowed me to construct a …

Contributors
Tallman, Michael Anthony, Carlson, Marilyn P, Thompson, Patrick W, et al.
Created Date
2015

The principle purpose of this research was to compare two definitions and assessments of Mathematics Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK) and examine the development of that knowledge among pre-service and current math teachers. Seventy-eight current and future teachers took an online version of the Measures of Knowledge for Teaching (MKT) - Mathematics assessment and nine of them took the Cognitively Activating Instruction in Mathematics (COACTIV) assessment. Participants answered questions that demonstrated their understanding of students' challenges and misconceptions, ability to recognize and utilize multiple representations and methods of presenting content, and understanding of tasks and materials that they may be using …

Contributors
Johnson, Jeffrey Ivan, Middleton, James A, Marsh, Josephine P, et al.
Created Date
2016

Based on poor student performance in past studies, the incoherence present in the teaching of inverse functions, and teachers' own accounts of their struggles to teach this topic, it is apparent that the idea of function inverse deserves a closer look and an improved pedagogical approach. This improvement must enhance students' opportunity to construct a meaning for a function's inverse and, out of that meaning, produce ways to define a function's inverse without memorizing some procedure. This paper presents a proposed instructional sequence that promotes reflective abstraction in order to help students develop a process conception of function and further …

Contributors
Fowler, Bethany Nicole, Carlson, Marilyn, Roh, Kyeong, et al.
Created Date
2014

The Mathematical and Theoretical Biology Institute (MTBI) is a summer research program for undergraduate students, largely from underrepresented minority groups. Founded in 1996, it serves as a 'life-long' mentorship program, providing continuous support for its students and alumni. This study investigates how MTBI supports student development in applied mathematical research. This includes identifying of motivational factors to pursue and develop capacity to complete higher education. The theoretical lens of developmental psychologists Lev Vygotsky (1978, 1987) and Lois Holzman (2010) that sees learning and development as a social process is used. From this view student development in MTBI is attributed to …

Contributors
Evangelista, Arlene Morales, Castillo-Chavez, Carlos, Holmes, Raquell M, et al.
Created Date
2015

A teacher’s mathematical knowledge for teaching impacts the teacher’s pedagogical actions and goals (Marfai & Carlson, 2012; Moore, Teuscher, & Carlson, 2011), and a teacher’s instructional goals (Webb, 2011) influences the development of the teacher’s content knowledge for teaching. This study aimed to characterize the reciprocal relationship between a teacher’s mathematical knowledge for teaching and pedagogical goals. Two exploratory studies produced a framework to characterize a teacher’s mathematical goals for student learning. A case study was then conducted to investigate the effect of a professional developmental intervention designed to impact a teacher’s mathematical goals. The guiding research questions for this …

Contributors
Marfai, Frank Stephen, Carlson, Marilyn P., Ström, April D., et al.
Created Date
2016

Past research has shown that students have difficulty developing a robust conception of function. However, little prior research has been performed dealing with student knowledge of function composition, a potentially powerful mathematical concept. This dissertation reports the results of an investigation into student understanding and use of function composition, set against the backdrop of a precalculus class that emphasized quantification and covariational reasoning. The data were collected using task-based, semi-structured clinical interviews with individual students outside the classroom. Findings from this study revealed that factors such as the student's quantitative reasoning, covariational reasoning, problem solving behaviors, and view of function …

Contributors
Bowling, Stacey Andrew, Carlson, Marilyn P, Thompson, Patrick W, et al.
Created Date
2014

This study purposed to determine the effect of an endogenously designed instructional game on conceptual understanding of the associative and distributive properties of multiplication. Additional this study sought to investigate if performance on measures of conceptual understanding taken prior to and after game play could serve as predictors of game performance. Three versions of an instructional game, Shipping Express, were designed for the purposes of this study. The endogenous version of Shipping Express integrated the associative and distributive properties of multiplication within the mechanics, while the exogenous version had the instructional content separate from game play. A total of 111 …

Contributors
Denham, Andre R., Nelson, Brian C., Atkinson, Robert K., et al.
Created Date
2012

This dissertation reports three studies about what it means for teachers and students to reason with frames of reference: to conceptualize a reference frame, to coordinate multiple frames of reference, and to combine multiple frames of reference. Each paper expands on the previous one to illustrate and utilize the construct of frame of reference. The first paper is a theory paper that introduces the mental actions involved in reasoning with frames of reference. The concept of frames of reference, though commonly used in mathematics and physics, is not described cognitively in any literature. The paper offers a theoretical model of …

Contributors
Joshua, Surani Ashanthi, Thompson, Patrick W, Carlson, Marilyn, et al.
Created Date
2019