A Meta-Analysis of the Effects of Calculators on Students' Achievement and Attitude Levels in Precollege Mathematics Classes
Aimee J. Ellington
November 2003, Volume 34, Issue 5, Pages 433 - 463
The findings of 54 research studies were integrated through meta-analysis to
determine the effects of calculators on student achievement and attitude levels.
Effect sizes were generated through Glassian techniques of meta-analysis, and
Hedges and Olkin's (1985) inferential statistical methods were used to test the
significance of effect size data. Results revealed that students' operational skills
and problem-solving skills improved when calculators were an integral part of
testing and instruction. The results for both skill types were mixed when
calculators were not part of assessment, but in all cases, calculator use did not
hinder the development of mathematical skills. Students using calculators had
better attitudes toward mathematics than their noncalculator counterparts. Further
research is needed in the retention of mathematics skills after instruction and
transfer of skills to other mathematics-related subjects.