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QUALITY OF THE TASKS IN THE NEW TURKISH ELEMENTARY MATHEMATICS TEXTBOOKS: THE CASE OF PROPORTIONAL REASONING

  • Ibrahim BayazitEmail author
Article

ABSTRACT

This study examines new Turkish elementary school mathematics textbooks to provide perspectives on the quality of the tasks related to the proportion concept and the ways they are presented. Tasks were analysed for several dimensions with a particular focus on their level of cognitive demands (LCD). Tasks were distinguished in two groups in terms of LCD: lower-level demand and higher-level demand. The findings revealed that 75 % of the tasks were related to higher-level demand in that they requested a certain level of interpretation, required connecting knowledge and procedures related to each other, demanded responses with some explanation and reinforced students’ non-algorithmic thinking. Only 25 % of the tasks were related to a lower-level demand, and these tasks could be resolved by recalling and implementing rules, procedures and factual knowledge without reflecting upon the meaning behind them. Most of the tasks were presented in multiple representations and framed in non-mathematical contexts. All these task characteristics indicate that the new elementary school textbooks have the capacity to promote students’ proportional reasoning. The findings also inform the international community about crucial aspects of the curriculum reforms in Turkey and provide suggestions for teachers and textbook writers concerning the quality of the tasks and their selection and implementation in the classrooms.

KEY WORDS

elementary education level of cognitive demand mathematical tasks proportional reasoning task context textbooks 

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Copyright information

© National Science Council, Taiwan 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationErciyes UniversityKayseriTurkey

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