Education Professor Receives Grant to Implement Online Math Tutorial

Program is aimed at improving abilities in mathematics problem solving for West Texas students.

A major goal for the web-based tutorial is to help teachers support students with diverse backgrounds.

A major goal for the web-based tutorial is to help teachers support students with diverse backgrounds.

A Texas Tech instructional technology professor received a $112,762 grant from the Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) to implement an adaptive web-based tutorial aimed at improving K-12 students’ abilities in mathematics problem solving.

Fethi Inan, assistant professor in the Department of Educational Psychology and Leadership, will use the grant to incorporate his previously designed tutorial,, into high school and junior high school math classrooms. His work focuses on increasing students’ math state test scores and algebra word problem-solving skills.

Inan’s proposal “Adaptive Problem Solving for Mathematics: Assessing and Adapting to Students While They are Learning” discusses how the project will directly involve students from public schools in West Texas. The majority of participating students are classified as “at risk” and are not college-ready.

Inan said the key to the tutorial is its adaptive feedback characteristic.

“While students solve problems, their knowledge and skills will be continuously monitored and the content presentation, assessment items, feedback and scaffolds will be adapted and personalized,” he said.

One of the major goals for the tutorial is to help teachers support learning, engagement and participation for students with diverse backgrounds.

Along with the tutorial, a research team will provide teachers with supplementary resources such as lesson plan examples and professional development materials for integration into their curriculum. With detailed progress reports, teachers can pinpoint the specific skills a student struggles with, and make the necessary adjustments.

Researchers will work with one school this fall to finalize the project. In the spring of 2012, the finalized tutorial will be implemented in three schools.