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Using Programming to Strengthen Mathematics Learning in 9th Grade Algebra Classes

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Computational/CS Initiatives

Tagged Division

K-12 & Pre-College Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.1332.1 - 23.1332.15

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Paper Authors


Eric A Freudenthal University of Texas, El Paso

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Eric Freudenthal is an Associate Professor of Computer Science.

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Kien H. Lim University of Texas at El Paso

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Dr. Lim's research interests are on students’ problem-solving disposition and instructional strategies to advance their ways of thinking. Dr. Lim is particularly interested in impulsive disposition, students’ propensity to act out the first thing that comes to mind. Dr. Lim's research goal centers on helping students advance from impulsive disposition to analytic disposition. Dr. Lim and colleagues are currently developing, testing, and refining a survey instrument to assess students’ impulsive-analytic disposition. They have been investigating instructional strategies, such as use of prediction items and classroom voting with clicker technology, to help students become aware of their impulsivity and to elicit and address mathematical misconceptions. Dr. Lim is also exploring the use of mathematical tasks to provoke students’ intellectual need for the concepts they are expected to learn. Lately, Dr. Lim has been involved in the iMPaCT-Math project to investigate the use of programming activities to foster student learning of foundational algebraic concepts.

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Sharie Kranz Coronado HS-EPISD


Catherine Tabor El Paso ISD and University of Texas at El Paso

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Catherine Tabor is a high school math and science teacher in El Paso, Texas. She is also a Ph.D. candidate in Computer Science at the University of Texas at El Paso. Her main focus is student achievement in STEM courses.

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Jeremy L Ramirez University of Texas at El Paso

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Using Programming to Strengthen Mathematics Learning in 9th Grade Algebra ClassesAlgebra I is a gateway course for high school and college STEM. Ninth graders who developmastery of Algebra I learning outcomes are well prepared to comprehend and succeed in thequantitative STEM courses such as physics. Those who do not are likely to encounter difficultyin subsequent STEM coursework.\The XYZ (name obscured for anonymity) project has developed a sequence of programmingbased learning modules (LMs) intended to complement traditional instruction within traditional9th grade Algebra I classrooms. During the summer of 2012, a dozen ninth grade mathematicsteachers from urban high schools attended a three day professional development program(PDP) that prepared them to integrate the XYM LMs within their classes. Assessment includesexamination of teacher implementations of the lessons and of the lessons’ impact upon studentlearning. This paper will qualitatively report on the effectiveness of the PDP in preparingteachers to effectively implement the lessons and quantitatively report on the LM’s impact uponstudent learning of core Algebra I concepts.

Freudenthal, E. A., & Lim, K. H., & Kranz, S., & Tabor, C., & Ramirez, J. L. (2013, June), Using Programming to Strengthen Mathematics Learning in 9th Grade Algebra Classes Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia.

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