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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Opportunity to Learn Mathematics in Low and High Performing Countries: A Cross-National Analysis of Teachers Enacting the Curriculum and Associated Factors
by Romero-Celis, Treisy, Ph.D., State University of New York at Albany, 2017, 308; 10681665
Abstract (Summary)

This exploratory study compares the opportunities to learn mathematics intended and enacted between countries with high and low student average performance levels, according to the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). It analyzes the differences in OTL in relation to some of the factors that influence teachers’ instructional decisions. The analysis contributes to the knowledge about teachers’ role in the enactment of mathematics curricular policy and that of curricular governance.

Taking a quantitative approach, the study uses data from the TIMSS 2011 to explore and compare the OTL, intended and enacted by teachers, as well as the gap between these two dimensions, in ten low and eight high performing countries. Policy instruments and teacher characteristics, in addition to their association with OTL mathematics, are also examined and compared between these two groups of countries.

Descriptive analysis of OTL mathematics depicts relevant differences, but also considerable similarities in intended and enacted OTL of low and high performers. This finding and the important gaps between the two curricular dimensions identified in both groups of countries challenge the notion of the existence of a high achieving mathematics curriculum.

Based on inferential statistics, results indicate differences between and across low and high performers in the associations of policy instruments and teacher factors with OTL, providing evidence in support of the claim that actors and local context redefine policies taken from other systems. Finally, this study argues that the divergence between intentions and enactment of the mathematics curriculum can also be regarded as teachers’ agency and re-defining of curricular policy in ways that are responsive to student needs.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Valverde, Gilbert A.
Commitee: Benavot, Aaron, Schiller, Kathryn S.
School: State University of New York at Albany
Department: Educational Policy and Leadership
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-A 79/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Mathematics education, Education Policy
Keywords: Curricular governance, Enacted curriculum, Mathematics curriculum, Opportunities to learn, Teacher policies
Publication Number: 10681665
ISBN: 978-0-355-54800-6
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