An analysis of errors in multi-digit arithmetic and arithmetic word problem solving in children with mathematical learning difficulties
2013 (English)In: Specialusis ugdymas, ISSN 1392-5369, Vol. 28, no 1, 121-132 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Arithmetic is a complex skill that draws upon conceptual and procedural knowledge and skills. Without sufficient conceptual and procedural knowledge and skills the child is at risk of encountering difficulties with developing age-adequate skills in arithmetic. The aim was to explore whether children with mathematical learning difficulties (MLD) display different patterns of errors, compared to children with no learning difficulties (No LD), when performing arithmetic, which would provide important information regarding these children's conceptual and procedural problems. The participants were 142 third and fourth graders with MLD and 112 children with No LD. The children performed multi-digit calculation and arithmetic problem solving tasks. The errors committed during the performance of the arithmetic tasks were categorised into different types (minor miscalculation error, wrong operation, subtracting smaller from larger, regrouping error, failure to regroup, poor reasoning). The Z-test for proportion was used as the statistical method. A higher proportion of children with MLD committed errors when subtracting the smaller from the larger number, in re-grouping errors, showed a failure to regroup errors and had poor reasoning errors when solving multi-digit calculation problems compared to No LD children. The higher occurrence of these errors related to the type of calculation strategy that the MLD children used. A larger proportion of children with MLD committed poor reasoning errors when performing arithmetic problem solving tasks compared to the No LD children.Consistent with Geary's framework and prior research, the present findings suggest that the MLD children's poor calculation performance is due to deficits related to both conceptual and procedural knowledge and skills, whereas their poor arithmetic problem-solving performance is mainly due to their poor reasoning skills.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Siauliu Universiteto Leidykla , 2013. Vol. 28, no 1, 121-132 p.
mathematical difficulties, conceptual problems, procedural problems, errors
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-104558OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-104558DiVA: diva2:697543
ProjectsUtveckling av matematiska förmågor och läsförmågor hos barn med olika typer av inlärningssvårigheter: En logitudinell studie
FunderForte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 2003-0158