The present longitudinal study was designed to investigate precursors of mathematics achievement in children. A total of 72 children were tested at both the beginning and end of first and second grades on measures of the following cognitive abilities: phonology, counting skills, short-term memory, working memory, and verbal and performance IQ. Path analysis models revealed differences in the variables predicting mathematics skills of first and second graders. Specifically, in first graders both short-term and working memory measures mediated the role of verbal IQ in predicting mathematics skills. Also, there was a direct relationship between performance IQ and mathematics at first grade. In contrast, in the longitudinal model, working memory measured both in first and second grades predicted mathematics achievement, whereas the relationship between performance IQ and mathematics disappeared. In conclusion, the results demonstrated that mathematics learning is predicted not by phonology or counting skills and that working memory is a plausible mediator in predicting mathematics achievement in primary school age children.

Cognitive abilities as precursors of the early acquisition of mathematical skills

PASSOLUNGHI, MARIA CHIARA;MAMMARELLA, IRENE CRISTINA;ALTOE', GIANMARCO
2008

Abstract

The present longitudinal study was designed to investigate precursors of mathematics achievement in children. A total of 72 children were tested at both the beginning and end of first and second grades on measures of the following cognitive abilities: phonology, counting skills, short-term memory, working memory, and verbal and performance IQ. Path analysis models revealed differences in the variables predicting mathematics skills of first and second graders. Specifically, in first graders both short-term and working memory measures mediated the role of verbal IQ in predicting mathematics skills. Also, there was a direct relationship between performance IQ and mathematics at first grade. In contrast, in the longitudinal model, working memory measured both in first and second grades predicted mathematics achievement, whereas the relationship between performance IQ and mathematics disappeared. In conclusion, the results demonstrated that mathematics learning is predicted not by phonology or counting skills and that working memory is a plausible mediator in predicting mathematics achievement in primary school age children.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/2267461
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