iPad algebra app piloted in Nevada schools

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today announced that Nevada’s Clark County School District (CCSD) has selected the HMH Fuse™: Algebra 1 App for approximately 1,000 of its students. HMH has partnered with CCSD to conduct a pilot study of students’ and teachers’ experience using the mobile curriculum on iPad 2® devices. The app combines mobile technology with the curriculum of HMH’s Holt McDougal to create a learning experience tailored to the needs of 21st century students.

Clark County School District, which includes Las Vegas, is the fifth largest in the country, and serves a population of more than 50 percent low-income and minority students. Algebra 1 students at Silvestri Junior High, Leavitt Middle School, Silverado High School, and the Academy for Individualized Study will participate in the pilot, with student ages ranging from eighth, ninth and tenth grades. With rigorous math and science courses serving as the single greatest predictors of high school and college success, the pilot will target a key population within the district at a critical time in their K-12 education.

“We know that there is a tremendous amount of room for improvement in our student’s math scores,” said Clark County School District Superintendent Dwight D. Jones. “We also know that many of our students are technology savvy and we have to engage them in ways that will stimulate their learning. So when we were presented with this opportunity to utilize a new application, we decided to implement the pilot program.”

Using the iPad®, students watch engaging video tutorials, swipe through pages, receive hints and walk through complex problems at home or on the go. The platform encourages the use of personalized lesson plans by combining direct instruction, ongoing support, assessment and intervention in one easy-to-use suite of tools.

To support CCSD’s goals in measuring the technology’s impact on learning, HMH has hired an independent research firm to measure pilot students’ performance and attitudes toward algebra over the 2011-12 school year. The study will also look at pilot teachers’ attitudes and comfort level with technology in the classroom. The pilot performance will be compared against that of students in districts of similar demographics.

The Clark County pilot will be the fourth pilot study conducted with the innovative curriculum app, joining four California school districts that participated in a large study last year, and the Edison Township School District in New Jersey and Socorro Independent School District in Texas who kicked off pilot studies this year.