The purpose of this meta-analysis was to examine the effectiveness of early numeracy interventions for young students, including students with disabilities or those at-risk for mathematics difficulty (MD). This study evaluated preschool, kindergarten, and first-grade interventions on early numeracy content, instructional features, and methodological components that improved students’ mathematics achievement. A total of 33 studies met inclusion criteria for this meta-analysis, with 51 treatment groups. Excluding outliers, the average weighted effect size for numeracy interventions across 49 treatment groups was moderate (g = 0.63), and the 95% confidence interval did not include zero [0.50, 0.73]. Results indicated that early numeracy interventions that included preschool and kindergarten students produced larger treatment effects than interventions with first-grade participants; in addition, treatment effects were slightly higher on average for students identified as at-risk for MD according to low socio-economic status and performance greater than the 25th percentile on a mathematics screener, compared to students who were identified as typically achieving or at-risk for MD according to performance below the 25th percentile. The results of the final meta-regression model for the total sample of studies indicated that the following predictors accounted for the most between-studies variance: concrete-representational-abstract instructional framework, intervention duration, risk status of participants, and the inclusion of counting with one-to-one correspondence in the intervention content (Pseudo R2 = 75%). Directions for future research on conducting interventions are provided, and implications for educators implementing early numeracy interventions are discussed.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. 2017. Major: Educational Psychology. Advisor: Kristen McMaster. 1 computer file (PDF); 246 pages.
The Effects of Early Numeracy Interventions for Students in Preschool and Early Elementary: A Meta-Analysis.
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