The purposes of this study were to assess the differential effects of a single strategy (schema-based instruction; SBI) versus multiple strategies (general strategy instruction, GSI) in promoting mathematical problem solving and mathematics achievement as well as to examine the influence of word problem-solving instruction on the development of computational skills. Eighty-eight 3rd graders and their teachers were assigned randomly to conditions (SBI and GSI). Students were pre- and posttested on mathematical problem-solving and computation tests and were posttested on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment Mathematics test, a criterion-referenced test that measures student attainment of academic standards. Results revealed SBI to be more effective than GSI in enhancing students' mathematical word problem-solving skills at posttest and maintenance. Further, results indicate that the SBI groups' performance exceeded that of the GSI group on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment measure. On the computation test, both groups made gains over time.
- Mathematical word problem solving
- Mathematics achievement
- Schema-based instruction
- Strategy instruction
- Third-grade students