Week 3: What will you have to know and do to begin your research?


After getting notification of the format of our action research assignment from my instructor, it was clear that there are five particular parts that are required for my research.  They are

  1. Introduction
  2. Literature Review
  3. Questions to be addressed
  4. Methodology
  5. Results with discussion

The topic I have chosen for my action research is computer-based math.  At this moment, to begin my research, I need to begin a thorough search of this topic.  Computer-based math is a relatively new area so I will need to be careful about how I search this topic.  Just using technology in a wide variety of forms in mathematics education does not imply computer-based math.  I have a good indication of what I need to look for as I search.  It will take some time, energy, and effort to accomplish this task.

After getting a more complete idea of computer-based math based on my literature review, I can then formulate up to three questions to answer.  At this moment, since I have not done a thorough search, it’s a little difficult to come up with some questions, but one question that I would like to answer is related to achievement and success.  Is there evidence that students that use computer-based math methods outperform their traditional counterparts that use hand calculation methods?  Maybe another question I like would like to answer is related to the specific apps/applications/technology that successful students use to perform better than their hand calculation methods counterparts.  Other than this, I could probably come up with another question, but at this time, it’s probably sufficient to answer these two.

Under methodology, I can come up with some indicators to determine if computer-based math methods would outperform traditional methods.  Assignment scores, assessment scores, surveys, and observations can be recorded and analyzed.  That would be delineated at a later date.

At this moment, I need to focus on literature review and focus on refining my questions…




3 thoughts on “Week 3: What will you have to know and do to begin your research?

  1. It seems that you know exactly where you need to begin so that your action research can be successful. I am very interested in researching computer-based mathematics practice also and I want to see how students are impacted by it on a behavioral and motivated stand point. Looks great Gerald and look forward to reading about your process!


  2. Greg,
    What a great topic to research, computer based math. This is one of the subjects that I think technology really helps us teachers with scoring and other reports. Traditional paper tests and homework, can be so paper intensive. I can remember doing algebra and having to use 3 piece of paper sometimes for one question. It would take my teachers just as long to correct how I figured out each step. Computer based math is a win-win technology.



  3. This is a very interesting idea. When I was in school I struggled with math class, and I wonder if my teachers had tried out using computer based it would have benefited me. I wonder if it would also depend how the students practiced before the test. The only thing I can see as a problem is that if the students are used to taking tests using paper and pencil, and if they switch to a computer will it negatively affect their scores because they are not used to using a computer.


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