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Texas Instruments System Proven to Increase Algebra Test Scores

Texas Instruments System Proven to Increase Algebra Test Scores

University of Texas at Austin researchers find test performance increases in socially-disadvantaged students, Hispanics and females.

Nov 15, 2005

DALLAS - (November 15 2005) - Research results announced today show the use of the Texas Instruments TI-Navigator™ Classroom Networked System significantly improves student scores in Algebra. Additional analyses demonstrate noteworthy gains for socially-disadvantaged students, Hispanic students and female students.

In Improving on Expectations: Preliminary Results from Using Network-Supported Function-Based Algebra, researchers from the University of Texas at Austin reported that the use of this technology was effective in improving Algebra learning, as assessed by the 9th grade Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test. Students in classrooms using the TI-Navigator system improved their mean TAKS scores by an average of 4.1 points. Students in classrooms that didn't incorporate the TI-Navigator system showed a decrease in mean scores by .3 point, essentially showing no improvement.

"Two of the most demanding goals in today's math classrooms are raising the bar and closing the gap in student learning," said Dr. Walter Stroup, principal investigator from the University of Texas at Austin. "Given our findings, the use of the TI-Navigator system as network supported, function-based Algebra (NFBA), can play an important role in meeting those priorities."

Function-based Algebra is the teaching of Algebra through engagement with, and movement between representations of functions in symbolic, tabular and graphical depictions. Incorporating the TI-Navigator system into the teaching process enhanced the delivery and classroom interaction and resulted in NFBA.

Research Process
The treatment group consisted of 127 algebra students taught by two relatively new teachers using the TI-Navigator classroom system as integrated with the ongoing use of an existing school-wide algebra curriculum. The control group was comprised of 99 students taught by two more-senior teachers in the same school using only the school-wide algebra curriculum. Both groups were from a highly diverse school in central Texas.

The treatment group used the TI-Navigator system, along with the algebra curriculum, in up to 25 days of classroom instruction over an 11-week period in the spring of 2005. The researchers compared results from the state-administered eight grade TAKS and ninth grade algebra TAKS items using a two sample paired t-Test for means and showed a statistically significant result for the treatment group compared with the control group:

  Treatment Control
8th grade TAKS scores 53.8 56.4
9th grade TAKS scores 57.9 56.1

Critical subpopulations also responded to the use of the technology:

  Treatment Control
Reduced lunch participants +4.7 percent -2.3 percent
Females +6.0 percent -0.05 percent
Hispanics +5.2 percent -1.1 percent

The award winning TI-Navigator classroom learning system provides wireless communication between students' TI graphing calculators and the teacher's PC. The technology allows teachers to instantly assess student understanding by viewing their work on the graphing calculator in progress, polling students with quick quizzes, and creating a forum for students to anonymously participate in classroom-wide activities. The system is in use nationwide and works with TI's latest TI-84 Plus graphing calculator family as well as its popular TI-83 Plus products.

"These results are a logical outgrowth of our long-standing practice of working with educators and integrating their experience with recognized research on effective instruction to improve student learning," said Melendy Lovett, president of the Educational & Productivity Solutions business at TI. "We're proud that we can provide math tools that make a difference and inspire the innovators of tomorrow."

The full research report can be found on TI's website at education.ti.com/research.

About Texas Instruments
Educational & Productivity Solutions, a business of Texas Instruments, provides a wide range of advanced tools connecting the classroom experience with real-world applications and enabling students and teachers to explore math and science interactively. Designed with leading educators, TI's educational technology and services are tested against recognized third-party research on effective instruction and improved student learning. Such research shows that use of graphing calculators and wireless collaborative technology in the classroom helps teachers implement instructional strategies that lead to higher student interest, engagement and achievement in mathematics.* For more than 15 years, TI has worked closely with educators and administrators to develop student-focused curricular and supplemental classroom materials, and it supports the world's largest professional development organization for the appropriate use of educational technology. More information is available at www.education.ti.com.

Texas Instruments Incorporated is the world leader in digital signal processing and analog technologies, the semiconductor engines of the Internet age. In addition to Semiconductor, the company's businesses also include Sensors & Controls, and Educational & Productivity Solutions. TI is headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and has manufacturing or sales operations in more than 25 countries.

Texas Instruments is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TXN.

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*Based on related research on classroom communications systems and specific pedagogy. See education.ti.com/research for more information.