Cognitive Profiles of Inadequate Responders to Fractions Intervention
Krowka, Sarah Kathryn
The purpose of the study was to explore the cognitive profiles associated with inadequate responsiveness to fractions intervention on 3 fractions outcomes (calculations, ordering, and word problems). At the start of 3rd grade, 2 cohorts of students (N = 124) identified at the start of intervention as at-risk for mathematics difficulties were evaluated on 5 cognitive processes: reasoning, processing speed, working memory (listening recall and counting recall), vocabulary, and behavioral attention. These students then participated in an intensive fractions intervention 3 days per week for 13 weeks. This analysis relied on this extant database to examine students’ responsiveness to fractions intervention in each of the 3 areas of fractions knowledge. Responsiveness was operationalized using the posttest mean of the control group on each relevant measure as the cut points. Cognitive profiles were explored using a within-group profile analysis and a between-group means comparison for each of the 3 fractions outcome samples. Between-group means comparison identified behavioral attention as associated with two of the three fractions outcomes: calculations and word problems. The within-group cognitive profile analysis revealed distinctive patterns of cognitive strengths and weaknesses for the inadequate responder groups within each sample. Implications for deepening understanding of fractions learning and for the remediation of mathematics difficulties are discussed.