Calculus Student Success

Calculus I is a gatekeeper role for STEM majors all over the country. The Mathematical Association of America (MAA) found that the use of active learning strategies was a vital characteristic of successful calculus programs. This sequential explanatory mixed-methods study explores this issue further by examining the relationship between student motivation and course structures for introductory calculus. Calculus I course structures with differing levels of active learning were examined. The theoretical framework of self-determination theory (SDT) guided this study, which defines three basic psychological needs that are essential to fostering students’ motivation: competence, autonomy, and relatedness (Courtesy of Paran Norton).

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