1 Texas Tech University (UNITED STATES)
2 Wichita State University (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2012 Proceedings
Publication year: 2012
Pages: 3007-3009
ISBN: 978-84-616-0763-1
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 19-21 November, 2012
Location: Madrid, Spain
Purpose of the Study:
In order to support K-12 students’ Algebra problem solving deficiencies, an adaptive problem solving tutorial was designed, developed, and implemented into K-12 mathematics classrooms. The developed tutorial ( provides adaptive practice and feedback based on learner characteristics (e.g., learning performance).

The purpose of this study is to present the findings from the evaluation of the tutorial. The question were:
• Did the adaptive tutorial improve student algebra problem solving skills?
• Was there any relationship between student study patterns and learning gains?
• How did various clusters of students benefit from the tutorial?

The participants were 79 8th grade students and two mathematics teachers from a junior high school from a small rural public school district located in southwestern US. Over 75% of the students were from poor socioeconomic backgrounds; a majority of were Hispanic (over 70%). Students interacted with the tutorial for 6 class sessions to study algebra problem solving in the spring 2012 semester.

Instruments & Measures:
• Pre/Post Knowledge Tests
• Student logs: Student’ answers and time spent per problem.
• Observation Form: Recording notes on implementation.
• Teacher Interviews: Gather teachers’ perceptions of the tutorial and their suggestions for improvement.
• Evaluation Survey: Fifteen items to assess students’ ratings of the tutorial quality(Kay & Knaack, 2009).
• Student Questionnaire: Gather what students liked most and least about the tutorial.
• Pedagogical Usability Survey: Twenty-five items to obtain student’ ratings on the pedagogical usability (Nokelainen, 2006).

Summary of Results:
A paired samples t test was carried out to examine the effectiveness of the adaptive tutorial on student problem solving skills. The test revealed that there was a highly statistically significant difference between pre and post knowledge test scores (t(54)= 4.509, p < 0.001). This result suggests that the adaptive tutorial can be used to improve students’ algebra problem solving skills in mathematics classrooms.

Pearson correlation coefficients were computed to investigate whether any relationships existed between students' patterns of tutorial use and their learning outcomes. Results indicated that the total amount of time that students spent studying the tutorial was significantly correlated with the ratio of correctly answered practice questions, and, moreover, the ratio of correctly answered practice questions was significantly correlated with student post test scores.

Mixed design ANOVAs w revealed a significant interaction between prior knowledge groups and knowledge gains from pre to post test. A follow up analysis indicated that students in the low prior knowledge group significantly increased their post knowledge test scores. Another test examined which group of students, female versus male, benefited more from the tutorial. Although, the interaction between gender and knowledge gain was not significant, the results from descriptive analysis indicated that female students benefited more from the tutorial compared to male students.
Adaptive Web-Based Learning Environment, Individual Differences, Adaptive Instruction, Adaptive Hypermedia, Online Learning.