Study notes math gains with interactive digital curriculum

Elementary math students are improving as much as three grade-level equivalents over the course of one school year as a result of SuccessMaker, an adaptive digital learning environment for K-8 students, according to the latest independent efficacy research from Gatti Evaluation, Inc.

The Gatti Evaluation study shows fifth-grade students learning with SuccessMaker gained 2.9 grade-equivalent levels and third-grade students improved by 1.8 grade equivalents on the Group Mathematics Assessment and Diagnostic Evaluation (GMADE) from pre- to post-test. The average growth rate expected per year is one grade equivalent.

All subgroups of students, including those of varying ethnicities, English proficiencies, and math ability levels, demonstrated significant gains in achievement with the educational software. Students with lower math ability made the most substantial gains.

“Our research confirmed that students who supplemented their core math studies with SuccessMaker saw statistically significant gains over the course of the one-year study, specifically in the areas of math concepts and communication, operations and computation, and process and applications,” said Guido Gatti, principal investigator of Gatti Evaluation study.”Additionally, we found that SuccessMaker students not only performed well across the board, but also outperformed their peers learning with print-based math supplements. “

SuccessMaker, from educational company Pearson, offers a personalized instructional sequence and embedded audio and visual cues. Study results show that students are responding positively to the program, with 86 percent of third-graders and 90 percent of fifth-graders reporting they enjoyed learning with the program. Educators indicated they felt the time spent with the program was a good investment and ultimately provided a learning benefit for students.

Gatti Evaluation conducted the scientific research study to evaluate the effectiveness of SuccessMaker over the 2008-2009 school year, monitoring third- and fifth-grade students in public schools in four states.