## Electronic Theses, Projects, and Dissertations

6-2020

Thesis

#### Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching, Mathematics

Mathematics

#### Abstract

Solving linear equations has often been taught procedurally by performing inverse operations until the variable in question is isolated. Students do not remember which operation to undo first because they often memorize operations with no understanding of the underlying meanings. The study was designed to help assess how well students are able to solve linear equations. Furthermore, the lesson is designed to help students identify solving linear equations in more than one-way. The following research questions were addressed in this study: Does the introduction of multiple ways to think about linear equations lead students to flexibly incorporate appropriate representations/strategies in solving problems involving linear equations? Which representations do students use to solve linear equations and in what context?

By using the do/undo flowchart for solving linear equations, students' learning will develop relations between concepts, and their learning will involve understanding and interpreting concepts. In this study, two methods were taught to students to collect one set of data on solving linear equations. Students completed pre and posttest, and some students were selected to participate in a 10-15 minute interview based on their responses from their assessments to clear up any ambiguity on the post-assessment. During the interview process, I took notes. The findings on the pre-post assessments were qualitatively evaluated and revealed that students from the control/comparison group struggled to recall the inverse operation strategy used for solving linear equations in one variable. The findings from the pre-post assessments also show that the experimental/treatment group may have benefited more from using the flowchart. The pre-post assessments were examined for each group because solving linear equations in one-variable is unfortunately taught using one procedure. However, the statistical analysis showed no significant difference between the groups.

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