Why do students keep or drop mathematics in Year 11?

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Theatre Q227, Level 2, Kwong Lee Dow Building Melbourne Graduate School of Education 234 Queensberry St University of Melbourne, Vic 3010

Mathematics and Science Education Research Seminar

It has been a national concern that in the last decades, participation in mathematics at intermediate and advanced levels continues to decline, and the gender gap in mathematics participation continues to widen. In a study aiming to understand the reasons for mathematics course enrolment choice, we derived an integrative motivation model as the theoretical base for an exploration of underlying factors that may affect the student’s choice. In this talk, I will report the rationale for identifying the related constructs in the model among a variety of alternative theories, and will use the derived model to write survey items for an instrument to measure factors predictive of mathematics enrolment choices.

With an extensive experience in statistical methodology and practice, Dr Ning Li, Australian Mathematics Sciences Institute, has been engaged in high quality research in the areas of Biostatistics, public health, economics, and education. Her research interest has been in the promotion of appropriate use of statistics to help understand social economic problems. Her recent work “Gender Report: Participation, Performance, and Attitudes towards Mathematics” focuses on gender disparities in mathematics education in Australia. She is excited about the forthcoming research into risk factors underlying the low participation in mathematics and associated gender differences in senior secondary school.