2221 words - 9 pages

The purpose of Chapter two is to review literature related to the major variables within the study. Two literature reviews were conducted. The first literature review examined the retention rates and low standardized test scores on Students taking Middle School Math. This follows the purpose of the conceptual framework, the Keller’s ARCS model(1987). Here, there will be literature related to inform the study that is related to the research design, intervention design, and measurement instruments. Lastly there will be a section on the Conceptual Framework.

Retention of Middle School Mathematical Students

President Barack Obama (2008) started his term by saying

The agenda starts with education. Whether you’re conservative or liberal, Republican or Democratic, practically every economist agrees that in this digital age, a highly educated and skilled workforce will be the key to not only individual opportunity, but to the overall success of our economy as well. We cannot be satisfied until every child in America-and I mean every child- has the same chances for a good education that we want for our own children.

With this promise came serious concerns over education taught students ranked 28th in the United States out of 40 other countries in Mathematics and Sciences. 80% of occupations depend on knowledge of Mathematics and Science (Week and Obama 2009). In order to ensure that educators have enough money to fund the endeavor to be more competitive with the rest of the world in Mathematics and Science, President Obama will increase federal spending in education with an additional 18 billion dollars in k-12 classrooms, guaranteeing educators have the teachers, technology, and professional development to attain highly qualified teachers, provide technology to enhance learning, and allow school districts to add additional help in areas of concern in Mathematics and Sciences (Darling-Hammond 2009).

How students perform in middle grade Mathematical and Science courses effects ultimately income after postsecondary careers. With Math and Science courses in grades 5-8 being such an integral part of academic performance, it is one of the least analyzed areas of research (Singh, Granville et al. 2002). This indicates why there seems to be a performance gap with students in these two core areas. Some of the areas where schools can help students perform better in Mathematics and Science courses are providing (a) academic engagement, (b) attitudes toward these subjects, and (c) importance of influence in future education and career possibilities (Ladson-Billings 1997; Singh, Granville et al. 2002; Reys, Reys et al. 2003; Neild, Balfanz et al. 2006).

Ladson-Billing (1997) see retention of Mathematics’ classes a tragedy; the United States students have far lower than other competing technological countries. He feels that one reason that Mathematical grades are low deal with a stigma of Math equaling “nerd-ness” thus not being synonymous with...

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