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Assessing Early Grade Mathematics Learner Outcomes Using m-Learning

The Case of JumpStart South Africa

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Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC,volume 1192)


JumpStart makes use of research-based structured learning material for mathematics together with in-class support by interns, teacher training, real-time formative and summative assessment, through m-learning. To assess its impact on learner outcomes, a cross sectional study design was adopted, whereby performance of a random selection for learners across Grades 1 to 3 in 18 schools was analysed. Grouped learner outcomes (at the level of a grade across groups of schools) prior to the intervention were compared to learner outcomes post the intervention and set alongside a description of the nature of the intervention. Improvements in learning outcomes, as measured by the Early Grade Mathematics Assessment (EGMA) are evident after one year of intervention, and appear to be strengthened after two years of intervention. Overall the JumpStart programme is having a significant impact on all the schools. The use of m-learning by interns for the efficient uptake and appropriate dosage of an early maths intervention; as well as the utility of a tablet interface for the efficient collection of early grade mathematics assessment data should be of interest to the m-learning and broader education community.


  • m-learning
  • South Africa
  • Mathematics
  • Early grades
  • Mobile-based assessment

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-49932-7_14
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The JumpStart intervention was funded by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, and undertaken by JumpStart Foundation. It makes use of the NumberSense mathematics learning programme developed by Brombacher and Associates, together with the JumpTrak digital platform developed by JumpCO.

The evaluation research on which this paper draws, was funded by Zenex Foundation, and undertaken by Kelello in collaboration with University of Johannesburg’s CEPR. I thank Dr Stacey Sommerdyk, Scott Hunt and Francesca Matthys for their contributions to the evaluation. Professor Elizabeth Henning (South African Research Chair on the ‘Integration of Mathematics, Science and Languages in the Primary School’ and director for CEPR), provided the support and enabling environment for this research.

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Roberts, N. (2021). Assessing Early Grade Mathematics Learner Outcomes Using m-Learning. In: Auer, M.E., Tsiatsos, T. (eds) Internet of Things, Infrastructures and Mobile Applications. IMCL 2019. Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing, vol 1192. Springer, Cham.

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