Forschungsschwerpunkt: mathematics


Pädagogische Hochschule Steiermark
Projektleitung gesamt
Vogel, Stephan; Priv.-Doz. Mag. , PhD / 7020 Karl-Franzens-Universität
Projektleitung intern
Graß, Karl-Heinz; HS-Prof. Mag. Dr.
Interne Projektmitarbeiter/innen
Imp, Christina; Mag. BSc. Prof. / 6200 Institut für Sekundarstufe Allgemeinbildung
Longhino, Daniela; Master of Education Prof. / 6100 Institut für Elementar- und Primarpädagogik
Externe Projektmitarbeiter/innen
Bauer, Martin; BSc
Dargel, Silas; BSc
Hohensinger, Alina; / Universität Graz
Universität Graz
2021 – 2024
Beschreibung (engl.)
There is increasing awareness and empirical evidence that mathematical competencies are crucial cognitive abilities in modern societies. They are equally important for life success as literacy (Parsons & Bynner, 2005) and individuals with difficulties often face severe economic (e.g., unemployment) and/or health related (e.g., depression) consequences (Gross et al., 2009; Litster, 2013; Vignoles, 2016). The number of people suffering from poor mathematical competencies is alarmingly high. Around 20 % of the population in the OECD countries show difficulties imposing practical and occupational restrictions (OECD, 2016). Current estimates indicate that 5-7 % suffer from developmental dyscalculia (American Psychiatric Association, 2013; Landerl et al., 2017): A developmental learning disability in the domain of mathematics. School closures due to the current COVID-19 pandemic have additional consequences on the academic development of young individuals (UNESCO, 2020). Several scientific reports have demonstrated that educators have difficulties to reach their students, to monitor their learning progress and to provide the necessary support for those who have difficulties (König et al., 2020). Given the severe consequences, we need comprehensive tools that help us (a) to identify children who are at risk for developing mathematical difficulties and (b) to continually assess students’ academic abilities and their learning progress outside the classroom. Information gained from such tools builds the crucial basis for the implementation of efficient intervention, effective prevention and tailored learning programs.
The present project aims to develop a new and scientifically evaluated digital assessment tool that measures cognitive abilities associated with the development of mathematical abilities. In the Digital Numeracy Assessment (DNA), multiple cognitive task will be implemented to cover a broad range of math-related competencies and numerical skills. As such, it can be considered as a multi-factorial measurement that captures different cognitive facets associated with the development of mathematical abilities. The main components are domain-general cognitive abilities (factors that are important for a broad range of academic abilities; e.g., working memory) as well as domain-specific cognitive abilities (factors that are especially important for the domain of mathematics; e.g., knowledge about numerical magnitudes and numerical symbols).
The development of this tool is structured into four project phases. In the first phase, we will select, develop and implement cognitive tasks known to capture relevant facets of mathematical development. In the next phase, we will test the tool in a small sample of pre- and elementary school children (the target group of the application). Information gained from this pilot-study will help us to further refine the content as well as the technical implementation of the tool. In the final phase, we will investigate psychometric criteria (e.g., reliability, validity) in a representative sample to ensure high test quality standards. Ultimately, the application will be freely available for cell phones, tablets, different computer platforms (e.g., Android and Macintosh) and languages across the EU. With the development of the DNA we support educational institutions to monitor the development of individual ability profiles and to capture specific sets of strengths (potential protective factors) and weaknesses of student’s mathematical abilities.