Math Research

Accelerated Math is another one of the UROK Learning Institutes proven intervention strategies. It is excellent for use in any grade and can be seamlessly integrated into any curriculum. Accelerated Math has been proven by research time and time again to dramatically raise student’s mathematic achievement. More than 2,000 third through tenth-grade students in 125 classrooms from 24 states participated in the study shown in the graph below. Students in Accelerated Math classrooms out-gained non-Accelerated Math students by between 7 and 18 percentiles.

In a study conducted by Dr. Semones and Dr. Springer in Arizona,  it was found that when using Accelerated Math, four times as many sophomore students at San Manuel High School (AZ) who did not pass the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) test, one that is required for graduation, passed after participating in a targeted math course using Accelerated Math. Fifty-seven percent of the students who took the AIMS Accelerated Math Class passed a retest of the AIMS math test during their junior year, compared to 14% for matched students who did not take the

28 students who had failed the AIMS math test in tenth grade were divided into two groups, matched by their AIMS math score. Fourteen students were enrolled in a special AIMS math class using Accelerated Math from the beginning of the school year (August 2003) until they re-took the AIMS test in April of 2004. Fourteen matched control students were identified and matched to the Accelerated Math students by their tenth grade AIMS math scores. The AIMS math class used a custom Accelerated Math library that included all 76 math concepts that are tested on the AIMS test. The class met for 55 minutes, five days a week. Students worked at their own pace, and whenever they struggled with an objective, an adult tutor was available to intervene and teach that particular objective to the student. All students in the class mastered all 76 objectives and participated in two weeks of review prior to retaking the AIMS test. Control students participated in their normal eleventh-grade curriculum, without any additional math tutoring or support. As additional incentive for students to pass the AIMS test, each student in both the treatment and control groups was told that they would receive $50 for passing the AIMS test. This was done so that both groups, neither of which needed to pass the test to graduate that year, would seriously try to pass the test.

Eight of the fourteen (57%) students enrolled in the special AIMS class successfully passed the AIMS math test. Only two (14%) of the control students passed. This difference is statistically significant at the p ≤ .01 level, suggesting that the use of Accelerated Math and the additional attention by adult tutors was the cause of the improved student performance. Additionally, all 14 students who participated in the Accelerated Math class demonstrated positive gains on the AIMS test, compared to only nine of the control students.

San Manuel students’ success on passing a retest of AIMS after engaging in a special class using Accelerated Math proves Accelerated Math’s effectiveness in preparing students in math for high-stakes testing. Based on the tremendous success experienced at San Manuel, Drs. Semones and Springer recommended in their report to Arizona principals that every high school in the state of Arizona implement the AIMS Math Skills Improvement Class using Accelerated Math. They estimated that about half of the tenth-grade students failing the AIMS math test would pass a retest after taking the class, compared with only about 15% passing without the class. Such a class would avert a likely crisis in Arizona by dramatically increasing the number of students who pass AIMS on retest.

In an initial trial of Accelerated Math at San Pasqual Academy (CA), high school students demonstrated following gains:

Math Table 10

Average pre-test score: 48.3 % correct

Average post-test score: 83.3 % correct

Average score improvement: 35%

When asked for his impression of the Accelerated Math intervention Math Specialist Jim Johnson concluded that the results were dramatic. The program was implemented  with our students placed in Algebra Foundations, based on the result of low scores on MAP testing.  The objective of this course is to effectively address barriers to success in math (fundamental skills, motivation, etc.) while diminishing test anxiety.

Due to years of struggle with math, the students in Algebra Foundations often display very low motivation, and a high degree of resistance to engaging the material.  For this reason, these students receive intense instructional support.

Direct instruction, targeting specific areas of need, is intended to build confidence upon success.  Because a student may be impeded in math, not by her or his proficiency with the multiplication table or other ‘math facts,’ but instead by lacking the vocabulary necessary to comprehend the required task, a focused mini-lesson is often the key needed to unlock student’s understanding.

While many students progress through the Accelerated Math program offered by UROK at San Pasqual Academy through the incremental steps of diagnostic testing, completing exercises, followed by final testing, many others manage to progress through ‘diagnostic’ testing alone.  This is especially prevalent on the Diagnostic Report for Foundations of Algebra.

The gains made by students moving incrementally can be assessed more easily given the report data generated by the Accelerated Math program.  As intimated earlier, success on exercises leads to final tests.  When comparing the average % correct for ‘Exercise’ with that of ‘Reg. Tests,’ we find that for almost every student the percentage increases from exercise to test, suggesting developing mastery.

Read more about Accelerated Math in our Informational Flyer!