Identification of factors impeding implementation of nontraditional math courses in Northwest Wisconsin
Adams, Steven H.
University of Wisconsin--Stout
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The purpose of this study was to understand the factors that have prevented the 34 school districts in Northwest Wisconsin from offering nontraditional math courses. Such courses, for the purpose of this study, are courses that count as math credit, based on the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction procedures, but that are not the traditional math courses of Algebra, Geometry, Algebra II, Advanced Math, or Calculus. This included determining if there were barriers preventing school districts from including these courses and understanding the perceptions surrounding the offering of career and technical education (CTE) or computer science courses as math credits. An online survey of key curriculum decision makers was conducted. The survey results indicated that representatives of school districts were generally aware of the 2013 Wisconsin Act 63 legislative changes, generally believed that their current math offerings met the needs of their students, and that granting math credits for computer science and CTE courses would help improve students' math knowledge. The final finding was that teacher availability was the greatest barrier for creating new math, computer science or CTE courses. Creating opportunities to leverage computer science and CTE instruction would enhance academic learning in Wisconsin school districts.