Venkatakrishnan, Hamsa, & William, Dylan
Tracking and Mixed-Ability Grouping in Secondary School Mathematics Classrooms: A Case Study
University of the Witwatersr
Trying to test if tracking produces systematic differences in provision of students.
Journal Name or Institutional Affiliation:
British Educational Research Journal
Vol. 29, No.2, pp. 189-204
- Tracking overall did appear to affect students' perceptions of themselves as learners of mathematics. Those in fast track groups perceived themselves as doing well, whilst those in the mixed-track groups perceived themselves as "low".
- Mixed-ability grouping, due to the skew in numbers, decreases the opportunities for higher attaining students to interact constructively whilst tracking does the same for lower attaining students.
- Only for the highest attaining 12% is placement in the tracked blocks advantageous. Placement in the fast track is beneficial for only upper half of each fast-track group. For other students, in this school, tracking made no difference or was deleterious.
- Unless a school can demonstrate that it is getting better than expected results through a different approach, we do make the presumption that mixed-ability grouping should be the norm in secondary schools.
Journal Article Empirical Research
Ability Groups, High School, Math, Middle School, Tracking
Method of Analysis:
Unit of Analysis:
- Divide students in a "fast track" consistingly of the most able 25-30% students in the cohorts and and a "mixed track" consisting of the rest.
- Students in year 7, 8, 9 and 10.
- Teachers reported results of progress attitudes, working cultures and atmosphere within these classrooms in ways
- DV: Students' perceptions, positive work culture
- IV: Tracking into "fast track" and "mixed track" groups