Equitable practices of the mathematics workshop approach instructional model : a quantitative investigation of urban high schools students’ attitudes towards mathematics.


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This one-group, quasi-experimental quantitative study explored the relationship between equitable mathematics instruction and students’ attitudes towards mathematics. Attitudes toward mathematics are one of the indicators of achievement in mathematics (Al-Mutawah & Fateel, 2018; Damrongpanit, 2019; Lipnevich et al., 2011; Lipnevich et al., 2016; Martinez, 2017; Moenika & Zahed-Babelan, 2010; Nuzuki, 2010; Singh & Imam, 2013). The Attitude Towards Mathematics Inventory framed the approach to measure for students’ attitudes and consists of four subscales of enjoyment, motivation, self-confidence, and value (Lim & Chapman, 2013; Tapia, 1996, Tapia & Marsh, 2000, 2002, 2004). Gutierrez’s (2007) equity framework was the theoretical framework for this study which contains four axes: access, achievement, identity, and power. While mathematics instructional approaches vary, I chose to contextualize this study within the mathematics workshop approach (Sharp et al., 2019). The mathematics workshop approach places students in the center of the learning experience and allowed teachers to use direct instruction, collaborative work time, and reflection for a complete mathematics lesson for all students. Participants in this survey (n = 1438) included all high school students who attended a large, suburban school with a diverse population near a metropolitan area. Quantitative analysis involved Pearson’s r correlation for reliability of data, one-way ANOVA to determine if race was a factor in the results, and a comparison of mean, median, and standard deviation between the three different surveys. Data revealed that students’ attitudes, regardless of race, improved in enjoyment and self-confidence when teachers employed the mathematics workshop approach. This result supported the notion that the mathematics workshop approach can be equitable for all students. Implications include changing mathematics instruction at the secondary level using the mathematics workshop approach to provide a more equitable approach for all students and the related increase in student success in mathematics with the improved attitudes that follow the change in instruction.