Effectiveness of using hand-held calculators for learning decimal quantities and the metric system.
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The problem of this research was to determine whether using hand-held calculators was more effective for the acquisition and retention of concepts and skills on decimal algorithms and metric units than the use of pencil and paper computation only.
The sample consisted of six intact sixth grade classes (175 students). Two classes hand-held calculators (the experimental group) and one class using pencil and paper only (the control group) were located in each of two schools in separate school districts. The classes were assigned randomly as either experimental or control. Each treatment period was 30-50 minutes daily for the duration of the twenty-five day study. Both groups studied the same content based on designated learning objectives.
Test scores of the Criterion Referenced Test in Metrics Measurement by Heber and a decimal test, developed by the researcher, were used as dependent variables. Both tests were used as pretests, posttests, and retention tests. The multivariate analysis of covariance technique was used to test the hypotheses.
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