The Effect of Worked Examples and Retrieval Practice on Primary School Students’ Mathematical Problem-Solving Performance

Sterre K. Ruitenburg*, Gino Camp, Paul A. Kirschner, Halszka M. Jarodzka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterAcademic

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Abstract

Practice strategies are ways to practice with new subject matter after initial instruction or self-study. To help students acquire (mathematical) problem-solving skills, two practice strategies are generally effective: practicing through worked examples and practicing through retrieval practice. However, it is not yet fully understood when each practice strategy should be used, despite the practical value of this knowledge for (mathematics) textbook authors, teachers, and students. To better understand what strategy works under which conditions, we propose to integrate two existing perspectives that were recently put forward into one new model. In this model, we argue that the optimal practice strategy depends on both the complexity of the learning task and on the time between the last practice opportunity and the test (i.e., the retention interval). We propose a preregistered multi-classroom experiment to test this model. More specifically, we plan to use a 2 (Task Complexity: simple vs. complex) x 2 (Practice Strategy: worked examples vs. retrieval practice) x 2 (Retention Interval: 5 minutes vs. 1 week) between-subjects design, with 22 participants per cell (N = 176). We also
plan to perform a Bayesian 2 x 2 x 2 ANCOVA on participants’ problem-solving
performance to test the three-way interaction effect of task complexity, practice strategy, and retention interval (Hypothesis 1), the two-way interaction effect of task complexity and practice strategy after 5 minutes (Hypothesis 2), and the two-way interaction effect of task complexity and practice strategy after 1 week (Hypothesis 3). During our Round Table presentation, we will discuss (a) any questions we have about received reviewers’ comments, (b) the viability and value of the theoretical integration we propose, and/or (c) our first ideas
on analysing the moderating qualities of (initial retrieval) effort and initial retrieval success.
Keywords: worked examples, retrieval practice, (mathematical) problem-solving, task complexity, retention interval
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 17 Mar 2022
EventICO National Spring School 2022 - Online, Utrecht, Netherlands
Duration: 17 Mar 202218 Mar 2022
https://sites.google.com/view/ico-nss-2022/home-1

Conference

ConferenceICO National Spring School 2022
Abbreviated titleICO ISS 2022
Country/TerritoryNetherlands
CityUtrecht
Period17/03/2218/03/22
Internet address

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