Investigating the teaching of statistics with technology at the high school level through the use of annotated lesson plans
Arnold, Elizabeth Grace
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Throughout the last twenty years, data analysis and statistics content, together with the integration of technology in mathematics classrooms, have gained increasing attention in the United States at the K-12 level. National and state standards now emphasize statistics concepts throughout high school and there is a growing motivation to shift from a traditional formula-based style of teaching statistics to a more data-oriented approach emphasizing conceptual understanding and statistical literacy. To implement this approach in the classroom, it is necessary to integrate technology into the teaching of statistics. However, many in-service high school mathematics teachers are not familiar with this process, and statistics is still a relatively new subject for most. This discrepancy highlights the need to help foster and develop in-service high school mathematics teachers' ability to effectively use technology when teaching statistics. The goal of this study was to investigate how specially annotated lesson plans influence and guide in-service high school mathematics teachers' use of technology when teaching statistical concepts. I developed a completely randomized block experiment, using quantitative and qualitative measurements and methods of analysis. High school mathematics teachers were randomly assigned to receive an annotated or non-annotated statistics unit that included technology-based activities; four lessons were observed. The results of this study demonstrated how the process of helping teachers effectively use technology in the instruction of statistics is not straightforward; there was a large amount of variation in how teachers integrated technology and no consistent differences between the annotated and non-annotated group in this regard. All teachers, regardless of received unit, integrated technology more effectively when they were provided with a technology-based activity employing simulation. Teachers' integration of technology was most influenced by their awareness of the use of inquiry.