Developing Students’ Mathematical Skills Involving Order of Operations

Ernna Sukinnah Ali Rahman, Masitah Shahrill, Nor Arifahwati Abbas, Abby Tan

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This small-scale action research study examines the students‟ ability in using their mathematical skills when performing order of operations in numerical expressions. In this study, the „hierarchy-of-operators triangle‟ by Ameis (2011) was introduced as an alternative BODMAS approach to help students in gaining a better understanding behind the concept of the order of operations. The study involved 21 students from Year 9 (or equivalent to 8th Grade in American schooling) in one of the government secondary schools in Brunei Darussalam. Mixed method research design was adopted for this study. Data were collected and analyzed from the students‟ pre and post-test scores as well as from the interviews. Comparisons of the scores showed positive progress and greater improvement in the students‟ performance. The interviews were necessary in order to gain the students‟ feedback in the implementation of the alternative approach. Most of the students who were interviewed responded that it was easier for them to remember the triangle rather than using the mnemonic as a tool to remember the order of operations.

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Ali Rahman, E.S., Shahrill, M., Abbas, N., & Tan, A. (2017). Developing students' mathematical skills involving order of operations. International Journal of Research in Education and Science (IJRES), 3(2), 373- 382. DOI: 10.21890/ijres.327896


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