University of Santiago de Compostela (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN21 Proceedings
Publication year: 2021
Pages: 11639-11645
ISBN: 978-84-09-31267-2
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2021.2435
Conference name: 13th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 5-6 July, 2021
Location: Online Conference
Nowadays, the majority of high school students have technological devices, mainly smartphones. These students use them every day, because they allow access to multiple applications of diverse kind. Some research (Calder & Campbell, 2016; Fabian, Topping & Barron, 2018; Radović, Marić & Passey, 2019) indicates that the use of certain applications helps increase student’s motivation towards mathematics. On the other hand, despite the fact that in some studies excessively significant results are not obtained, in terms of improvement in academic performance (Fabian, Topping & Barron, 2018), it is highlighted that its use helps to obtain a better understanding of the concepts.

In particular, in this work we present an analysis of mathematical applications that can be found in the Android operating system and that are good candidates for their implementation in the classroom. The main objective of the research is to show the educational power of various mathematical apps, analyse the advantages and difficulties of each of them, as well as the improvements that could be incorporated.

The selection criteria has been made based on those apps that have a rating higher than 4 stars (which highest level is 5). The analysis instrument corresponds with the following indicators: educational level (ESO or A level), mathematical content (algebra, arithmetic, analysis, geometry and statistics), objective (academic, ludic or calculator and / or software), language (Spanish or English), price (total free or free with in-app purchases), number of downloads, score and internet connection.

The results show that most of the applications work in the areas of arithmetic, algebra and geometry. On the other hand, the level indicator reflects that the majority of them are suitable for students who course secondary school and A level. In addition, those applications with the highest number of downloads have a ludic purpose or a calculator and /or software format.The analysis shows that some improvements could be incorporated to the applications, such as allowing teachers to monitor the results or making them more suitable for teamwork. Despite all this, in general, they are tools with great potential to use as support in the classroom.

[1] Calder, N., & Campbell, A. (2016). Using mathematical apps with reluctant learners. Digital experiences in mathematics education, 2(1), 50-69.
[2] Fabian, K., Topping, K. J., & Barron, I. G. (2018). Using mobile technologies for mathematics: effects on student attitudes and achievement. Educational Technology Research and Development, 66(5), 1119-1139.
[3] Radović, S., Marić, M., & Passey, D. (2019). Technology enhancing mathematics learning behaviours: Shifting learning goals from “producing the right answer” to “understanding how to address current and future mathematical challenges”. Education and Information Technologies, 24(1), 103-126.
Mathematics, secondary, apps, technology.