Exploring Teaching Strategies to Attain High Performance in Grade Eight Mathematics: A Case Study of Chungcheongbuk Province, South Korea

Lambertus Gerhardus van der Wal, Zigiswa Mybert Monica Jojo


This paper reports on a study conducted to investigate the teaching strategies used in the South Korean mathematical classroom and establish how they attain high performance in mathematics in comparison with other countries. The study focused mainly on the grade eight mathematics classroom and the teaching strategies used by the teachers as well as the students’ perspective of the teaching strategies used. This was a case study in which both quantitative and qualitative research methods were used to collect data. Questionnaires consisting of a total of fifty closed questions to establish teaching strategies used, preferred learning styles from the students and how they felt about mathematics and the mathematical classroom were administered to two hundred and two grade eight students in sampled schools. An interview consisting of ten open questions to get feedback from the mathematics teachers on what teaching strategies they use in the classroom and what they think is the best strategy to use regarding mathematics were conducted with six grade eight teachers from those schools. The results showed that in the South Korean mathematics classroom a combination of direct instruction, practice and teacher guidance help the students to learn problem solving skills and to master mathematics. It was also revealed that students preferred that the teachers use mostly chalkboard instruction and that they practice solving problems with worksheets, exam paper questions and homework or private study. Also the study revealed that the average student studies mathematics about 6 hours a week and most of them go to afterschool academies to study more mathematics.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n23p1106

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This work is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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