Exploring differential effects of mathematics courses on mathematics achievement

Xin Ma, Laureen J. McIntyre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Using data from the Longitudinal Study of Mathematics Participation (N - 1,518 students from 34 schools), we investigated the effects of pure and applied mathematics courses on mathematics achievement, controlling for prior mathematics achievement. Results of multilevel modelling showed that the effects of pure mathematics were significant after adjusting for traditionally important student-level predictors of achievement and for school effects. The effects of mathematics courses varied significantly across schools. Students taking pure mathematics achieved higher in smaller schools, particularly schools with higher teacher commitment. Students taking applied mathematics achieved higher if they attended smaller schools.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)827-852
Number of pages26
JournalCanadian Journal of Education
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2005


  • Alberta education
  • Mathematics achievement
  • Mathematics courses
  • Multilevel modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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