Special Education ETDs

Publication Date



This study was conducted to determine the effects of individualized instruction on mathematics achievement in the third grade. Hypotheses were that: (1) individualized instruction would result in greater mathematics achievement than group instruction in mathematics, and that (2) individualized instruction would result in greater interest in mathematics than group instruction in mathematics.

Forty third grade students from each of two geographically adjacent elementary schools were randomly selected to comprise the experimental and control groups. The Metropolitan Achievement Test, Elementary Arithmetic Form B, Otis-Lennon Mental Ability Test, Elementary Level I-Form J, and an interest questionnaire were administered to both groups. A post-test only control group design was used.

The experimental group was taught using a curriculum of specific instructional objectives and criterion referenced measures of these objectives. Each student was allowed to progress at his own rate through the curriculum. The control group received step-by-step, page-by-page instruction as an entire class and followed the textbook throughout the year. No individualization was used in the control group.

Analysis of variance on the mathematics achievement test was done for Problem Solving and Concepts with significant (.e_ < .05, df 1, 79) results. Computation results on the mathematics achievement test were not significantly different. Mathematics interest c1uestionnaire total scores were significant (e_ < .01, df 1, 79). Chi square was used to measure first choice of mathematics as subject preference with significant (.e_ < .001, df 1, 79) results. Significant (p < .001, df 1, 79) results were also obtained when chi square was used to indicate the subject in which students believed they had made the most progress.

Data from this study indicated that individualized instruction in Problem Solving and Concepts resulted in greater mathematics achievement than group instruction. The data also showed that individualized instruction in Computation resulted in no significant differences between individualized and group instruction. One important· consequence of the program was the significantly increased interest in mathematics as evidence by the data from the questionnaire.

Document Type




Degree Name

Special Education

Level of Degree


Department Name

Special Education

First Committee Member (Chair)

Billy L. Watson

Second Committee Member

Glenn Van Etten

Third Committee Member

Roger Lee Kroth