June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
Educational Research and Methods
15.1093.1 - 15.1093.7
StepWise Method for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing STEM Students in Solving Word Problems
At National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), a large percentage of the deaf / hard of hearing (d/hh) students enrolled in college level studies are challenged by their English and mathematical skills.1 Because of these two critical skills areas, they struggle to master the interpretation of a word problem or written instructional manuals to a problem in order to derive a correct solution.
The StepWise procedural method was developed as a general step-by-step guideline for students to follow in solving a scientific, technological, engineering, or mathematical problem or the instructions of a word problem. The goal was to help d/hh STEM students focus on their English, mathematical and critical thinking skills while they sort through word problems. Based on several observations, some d/hh students who benefit from this method appear to have increased comprehension of the steps necessary to solve a word problem. If the resulting answer does not match the expected answer, StepWise allows students to redo the process.
This StepWise method was developed and implemented during the winter of 2009 when the students struggled in an engineering course with physics and math emphases. This method will be tested in other engineering and information technology courses. In some programming courses, this method is available to students who develop software and web applications. Other applications are under investigation.
Results for students who utilized the StepWise method will be presented and discussed. While the preliminary findings look promising, more work needs to be addressed. The goal of this paper is to share the preliminary findings and to collect feedback from the instructors at the conference.
At NTID, a large percentage of the deaf / hard of hearing (d/hh) students enrolled in college level studies are challenged by their insufficiently developed English and mathematical skills. Because of a weakness in these two critical skills areas, they struggle to understand word problems and instruction manuals, which make it very difficult for them to find correct solutions.
It has been well documented that the majority of the deaf population has some degree of reading and writing challenges. The root of the problem is a lack of communication, especially during the early years. In our society, hearing people acquire their first language from what is spoken around them, chiefly from their parents and from other children. English as a spoken language is very rich, and with our technologies, people gather information through various audio mediums. Even considering syntax, spoken language usually has its own set of grammatical patterns that may be quite different from written language. Being deaf, especially at birth, affords a person very limited ways to acquire the language through hearing and speaking.
Behm, G., & Behm, J., & Bellinger, S., & Stanislow, J. (2010, June), Stepwise Method For Deaf And Hard Of Hearing Stem Students In Solving Word Problems Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. https://peer.asee.org/16737
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