Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

An investigation of the relationships among mathematical beliefs, self-regulation, and achievement for university-level mathematics students
by Briley, Jason Scott, Ph.D., The University of Alabama, 2007, 133; 3313697
Abstract (Summary)

This study investigated the relationships among mathematical beliefs, sources of self-regulation, and achievement for university-level remedial mathematics students. Most self-regulation models put emphasis on active self-regulation, including the use of cognitive and metacognitive learning strategies, as the only internal source of self-regulation that impacts learning processes. However, the biofunctional model proposes that learning is multisource in nature, affected by both external and internal sources. This model includes, as a second internal source of self-regulation, dynamic (or biofunctional) self-regulation processes as the immediate source of curiosity and interest. Furthermore, epistemological and mathematical beliefs have been shown to be related to self-regulation and achievement. Therefore, both beliefs and self-regulation may be seen as contributors to student learning. This is especially important for remedial students, whose possibly nonavailing beliefs about mathematics and/or poor self-regulation may adversely affect their learning for understanding. In this study, 94 mathematics students completed two surveys to measure mathematical beliefs and active self-regulation, dynamic self-regulation, and multiple-source self-regulation. The results showed that students who reported more availing beliefs about the nature of mathematics, the doing, validating, and learning of mathematics, and the usefulness of mathematics were more likely to report greater frequency of all three types of self-regulation. The belief about the usefulness of mathematics and multiple-source self-regulation positively predicted mathematics achievement, whereas active self-regulation negatively predicted mathematics achievement. Multiple-source self-regulation was a positive predictor of academic achievement as well. Most of the findings were consistent with biofunctional theory. The implication of this study is that mathematics educators need to recognize the importance of availing mathematical beliefs as well as multiple-source or wholetheme self-regulation for possibly better learning outcomes for students.

Indexing (document details)
School: The University of Alabama
School Location: United States -- Alabama
Source: DAI-A 69/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Mathematics education, Educational psychology, Higher education
Keywords: Achievement, Biofunctional, College students, Developmental mathematics, Mathematical beliefs, Mathematics achievement, Self-regulation
Publication Number: 3313697
ISBN: 978-0-549-63082-1
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