School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Beth E. Ackerman

Primary Subject Area

Education, Higher; Education, Mathematics; Education, Technology


computer-assisted, developmental mathematics


Educational Methods


Colleges and universities are trying alternative instructional approaches to improve the teaching of developmental mathematics with the goal of increasing the number of students who have the skills and knowledge required for college-level math courses and for the twenty-first century workforce. Computers and the internet make possible new methods of delivering instruction so students will have choices of when, where, and how they learn math. The purpose of this study was to compare academic performance of students enrolled in a developmental mathematics course using traditional instruction, traditional instruction supplemented with computer-assisted instruction, and online distance learning. In addition, gender differences in mathematical performance were also investigated. The quasi-experimental study was conducted in Intermediate Algebra classes at a large, private, eastern university. An analysis of covariance was used to adjust the mean posttest scores for any initial difference in the groups on the pretest. There was no statistically significant difference in the posttest scores of students receiving traditional instruction and traditional instruction supplemented with computer-assisted instruction. There was a significant difference in the posttest scores of females and males, with females outperforming males in both modes of instruction. Although the original intent of this study was to include a group of students who took the course online, pretest scores for this group excluded them from the analysis. Institutions should offer developmental mathematics courses in a variety of formats, assist students in selecting the mode of instruction that best suits their learning style, and provide professional development in computer-assisted instruction.