Equity and quality mathematics education within schools: findings from TIMMS data for Ghana

SOURCE: African Journal of Research in Mathematics, Science and Technology Education
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2010
TITLE AUTHOR(S): G.Frempong
KEYWORDS: GHANA, MATHEMATICS ACHIEVEMENT, MATHEMATICS TEACHING, QUALITY ASSESSMENT, TIMSS
DEPARTMENT: Education and Skills Development (ESD)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 6685

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Abstract

In 2003, about 50 countries including Ghana participated in the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS). This is the first time that Ghana has participated in an international mathematics assessment that has provided the reliable data to examine equity and the quality of mathematics education within schools in Ghana. This article is about the author's analysis that indicates that there is a significant variation among schools in their students' mathematics outcomes. The most successful students are males with highly educated parents. These students have high academic expectation. Like mathematics and are confident learning mathematics. They attend schools that are often located in towns but not in villages or remote areas. In these schools, the parents of students are highly educated and the mathematics teachers do not frequently use calculators but often provide students the opportunity to explain their mathematical ideas. These findings demonstrate that efforts to improve the quality of mathematics education and ensure equity in mathematics outcomes would require a comprehensive and holistic approach involving students, parents and teachers.