Preference for Solution Methods and Mathematical Performance: A Critical Review
Bhesh Mainali 1 *
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1 Rider University, NJ, USA* Corresponding Author


Preferences for solution methods have an important implication teaching and learning mathematics and students’ mathematical performances. In the domain of learning mathematics, there are two modes of processing mathematical information: verbal logical and visual-pictorial. Learners who process mathematical information using verbal logical and visual -pictorial modes are respectively called verbalizers and visualizers. Based on the verbalizer-visualizer continuum, students can be placed in a continuum with regard to their preference for solution methods and correlation between the two modes of thought. They belong to one of three categories: (a) visualizers (geometric), who have a preference for the use of visual solution methods, which involve graphic representation (i.e., figures, diagrams, and pictures); (b) verbalizers (analytic), who have a preference for the use of nonvisual solution methods, which involve algebraic, numeric, and verbal representation; and (c) harmonics (mixer), who use visual and verbal methods equally. Several research studies have been conducted to examine the relationship between preferences for solution methods and mathematical performances; however, no conclusive findings were reported. Regardless of inconclusive findings, it is important for students to develop preferences for both solution methods: visual and nonvisual. The mathematical instructional strategies need to equally incorporate preferences for both solution methods, utilizing different modes of mathematical representations, in order to enhance learning mathematics.


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Article Type: Review Article

INT ELECT J MATH ED, 2021, Volume 16, Issue 3, Article No: em0651

Publication date: 18 Jul 2021

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Article Downloads: 936

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