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Students’ Reasoning in Mathematics Textbook Task Solving
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3691-1995
2013 (English)In: FontD 10-year anniversary meeting with the Scientific Committee / [ed] K. Schönborn & L. Tibell, 2013Conference paper, Poster (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

To a large extent school mathematics consists of procedures to be memorized without understanding. Using procedures without understanding is one of the main causes behind the difficulties when learning mathematics. By developing mathematically founded reasoning, other mathematical competences are also developed; problem solving and conceptual understanding. The textbook is important in mathematical education. This study reports an analysis of students’ textbook task solving in Swedish upper secondary school were the relation between types of mathematical reasoning used and the success and failure to complete tasks was studied. Results show that using rote learning and superficial reasoning is common, although only about 50 % of the tasks where successfully solved using such strategies. In the case that mathematically founded reasoning was used, the tasks were successfully solved. Conclusions from the study are that students’ work with textbook tasks mainly let the students develop rote learning and superficial reasoning and students are not enhanced to develop mathematically founded reasoning in their work with textbook tasks. Students have to work with textbook tasks in other ways or be given other additional opportunities in order to develop mathematically founded reasoning.


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Studies in Science and Technology Education, ISSN 1652-5051 ; 68
National Category
Educational Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-117557OAI: diva2:811107
Nationella forskarskolan i naturvetenskapernas och teknikens didaktik. Scientific Meeting (2013).
Available from: 2015-05-11 Created: 2015-05-04 Last updated: 2015-05-11

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Sidenvall, Johan
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Department of Social and Welfare Studies
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