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ISSN: 2231-9425

USING TI-NSPIRE GRAPHING CALCULATOR

Nor’ain Mohd. Tajudin 1, Noraini Idris2

1

Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris, Tanjong Malim, Perak

2

Faculty of Education

University of Malaya

ABSTRACT

In general, the potential for graphing calculators (GC) to radically change the teaching of Statistics is

enormous. Students can analyze data numerically and graphically, compare expected results to observe

results, create models to describe relationships, and generate simulations to understand statistical

situations in ways that would not be possible without technology. Further, it allows students to use real

data in real situations, move easily between tabular representations, graphical representations, and

symbolic representations of the data, and provides the opportunity to think about how each representation

contributes to understanding the data. These activities will enable students to create relationships in their

own minds and constructing their own knowledge derived from basic knowledge and experiences during

statistics classes. This paper elaborates how the TI-Nspire GC can be used to enhance students’

understanding in learning Statistics and presents a quasi-experimental study which investigates form four

students’ performance in learning Statistics using the tools. The results showed that students in the

experimental group (GC strategy) had significantly better scores in the Statistics Achievement Test than

those from the control group (conventional instructional strategy). These findings indicate that students

who were exposed to the use of TI-Nspire GC performed better in the test. The use of this strategy

enables students to exploit the fullest advantages of the use of GC in achieving in-depth understanding of

statistical concepts and facilitating students in solving statistical problems.

strategy, statistics for secondary school

INTRODUCTION

There are many kinds of technology that are considered relevant to teach statistics these

days. These range from very powerful computer software such as Mathematical, Maple,

and Math Lab to much powerless technologies such as the use of calculators and paper

and pencil. The use of hand-held technologies, namely, the graphing calculators has

been explicitly suggested in the curriculum specifications for secondary school

mathematics (Ministry of Education, 2012). In the case of graphing calculator, the

Ministry of Education has started distributing the graphing calculators to several

hundred secondary schools throughout the country since 2002. However, the usage of

graphic calculators in Malaysian school is still in the early stage and there are not many

schools which have explored the use of the technology (Noraini, 2006; Nor’ain et al.,

2009; Lim & Kor, 2004). Furthermore, Malaysia has not started on compulsory

Jurnal Pendidikan Matematik, 2 (1), 16-31 (2014)

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comparison, countries such as England, Australia, Singapore, Thailand, Japan and

United States of America has longed implement the usage of graphic calculator as early

as 1998. Since the scientific calculators are already used in the Malaysian Certificate

Examination level, it would also be timely to think about using graphing calculators in

the context of mathematics teaching and learning and thus in Malaysian public

examination. This would bring Malaysian secondary mathematics education to be at par

with other countries and thus, it is worth to spend a large amount of money acquiring

the handheld devices.

Even though graphing calculators were distributed to several selected schools in 2002,

not much success has been recorded as to their use in mathematics classroom practices.

Most probably, the problem is that most teachers have not learnt mathematics using

these technology tools before hence they were lack of knowledge of technological

pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK) on how to use them in mathematics teaching.

According to a study by Effandi and Norazah (2007), two factors have been identified

as the main factors in the application of technology in the teaching and learning of

mathematics. The first factor is the teachers’ perception that the use of technology is not

able to help in the teaching and learning of mathematics. This was further worsened by

the fact that teachers always claim that they do not have sufficient time to prepare for

ICT integrated lessons. According to a research by Haslina et al. (2000), in the present

teachers’ professional development courses, there are hands-on activities but this was

not supported by relevant modules or manuals for the facilitators and the course

participants. The activities conducted in those courses are teacher-centered and in most

situations, courses are conducted using softcopy materials supplied by vendors. The

approach was rather ineffective in the learning of the particular software which

normally requires active participation from the participants.

Mathematics teachers need preparation in identifying what and how to teach in the era

of 21st century. They need guidance to be able to do and how do they need to develop

this knowledge for teaching mathematics. In other words, to be prepared to teach

mathematics, teachers need an in-depth understanding of mathematics (content),

teaching and learning (the pedagogy), and TPCK – “an overarching conception of their

subject matter with respect to technology and what it means to teach with technology”

(Niess, 2005, p.510). TPCK for teaching with technology means that as teachers think

about particular mathematics concepts, they are concurrently considering how they

might teach the important ideas embodied in the mathematical concepts in such a way

that the technology places the concept in a form understandable by students.

Thus, this research attempts to provide the current best practices in integrating the use

of latest graphing calculator technology (i.e. TI-Nspire) in teaching and learning of

mathematics, to compare the effects of using graphing calculators in teaching and

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for these technologies.

looks at understanding mathematics from two perspectives, both of which fulfill

particular functions in everyday life. They are relational understanding and instrumental

understanding. The former refers to knowing both what to do and why while the latter is

only the ability to apply rules (knowing what to do) but without knowing the reasons

(the why). Skemp (1978) further mentions that instrumental understanding is just a

piece of rote memorization of basic skills and algorithms while relational understanding

is robust, connected and full of interconnecting ideas and less dependence on memory.

The knowledge acquired by a learner instrumentally might be rendered useless if the

learner confronts a slightly different problem situation while knowledge gain through

relational understanding is more adaptable to new tasks.

understanding based on the performance perspective. Briefly, this performance

perspective mentions that understanding a topic of study is concerned with the ability to

perform in a variety of thought-demanding ways relating to the topic. Examples of

thought-demanding ways are explaining, gathering evidence, finding examples,

generalizing, applying concepts, analogizing and representing in a new way. Perkins

(1993) further stresses that the more thought-demanding performances the student can

display, the more confident the teacher would be that the student understands.

Hiebert and Carpenter (1992) define understanding in terms of the way information is

represented and structured. They argue that the mathematical idea, procedure, or fact is

understood if its mental representation which is the internal network is part of a network

of representations. The number and the strength of the connections will determine the

degree of understanding. Further, mathematical idea, procedure, or fact is understood

thoroughly if it is linked to existing networks with stronger or more numerous

connections. Hiebert and Carpenter also emphasized that the connections which create

networks form several kinds of relationships, including similarities, differences, and

inclusions and subsumptions.

science in terms of mental activity. This mental activity contributes to the development

of understanding and not as a static attribute of a person’s knowledge. The five forms of

mental activity are; constructing relationships, extending and applying mathematical

and scientific knowledge, reflection, articulation, and making knowledge one’s own.

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understanding), Perkins (performance perspective), Hiebert and Carpenter

(representation of knowledge) and Carpenter and Lehrer (five forms of mental activity)

all point to the same thing; the main ingredient in understanding should be the ability of

the learners to retain what they learn and transfer it meaningfully to novel situations.

for performing statistics tasks. The characteristic of these plans is that they prescribe a

step-by-step procedure to be followed in performing a given task, with each step

determining the next (Skemp, 1978, p.14). However, the process of learning statistical

concepts and skills are active. The students should learn by investigating, exploring, and

collecting data by themselves. These activities will enable students to create

relationships in their own minds and constructing their own knowledge derived from

basic knowledge and experiences during statistics classes. These activities would have

been too difficult to attempt without technology. Exploratory activity in statistics lesson

may facilitate an active approach to learning as opposed to a passive approach where

students just sit back passively listening to the teacher. This creates an enthusiastic

learning environment. This clearly shows the application of constructivist learning

environment.

One form of technology, the graphing calculator, has “become one of the most widely

adopted technologies in education because they are a proven-effective, affordable,

handheld device with direct linkages to curricula” (Roschelle & Singleton, 2008, p.

951).TI-Nspire technology extends current graphing calculator technology in ways that

fit with research recommendations (Centre for Technology in Learning, SRI

International, 2007). Specifically, TI-Nspire learning handhelds have bigger, sharper

screens, allowing graphs to be explicitly labelled and for students to see graphed

functions in more detail. Two important enhanced capabilities of the TI-Nspire graphing

calculator are dynamically-linked multiple representations and save and review of

student work.

Previous graphing calculators were designed with a screen that allowed for individual

representation of mathematical analysis (e.g., students were unable to view a graph of a

function and the mathematical equation at the same time). The TI-Nspire technology

can display up to four representations namely algebraic, graphical, geometric, numeric

and written on the same screen. These representations can be dynamically linked, so

that changes made to one representation of a concept are automatically reflected in

others instantly. Changes can be viewed simultaneously across multiple representations.

The Centre for Technology in Learning (2007) noted that these linked representations

helped focus students’ attention on the relationships among algebraic equations, graphs,

and tables of data.

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Furthermore, with TI-Nspire technology, students and the teacher can create, edit and

save a sequence of mathematical steps in a document that can be saved and later re-

opened. Research suggests that the save and review feature can improve teaching and

learning by enhancing reflection, enabling formative assessment and increasing

academic learning time. Ng. (2011) stated that the TI-Nspire should be used to

stimulate students to think mathematically so that they can engage strongly with

mathematical structures and concepts in ways that are not possible with traditional

paper and pencil approaches.

In this study, by using the tool such as the TI-Nspire graphing calculator, students may

have the benefits in developing their understanding of statistical concepts including

grasp of basic concepts before they study further advanced topics. Therefore, in order to

help students learn statistics with understanding the teacher should facilitate the

construction of ideas concepts and processes through a careful selection of resource

materials and relevant with the real world problems. Rather than just development of

mechanical and computational skills, TI-Nspire graphing calculators also allow for

cultivation of analytical adeptness and proficiency in complex thought process.

Problems representing real-world situation and data with complicated numbers can also

be addressed. This would offer new opportunities for students to encounter statistical

ideas not in the curriculum at present. With appropriate use of the graphing calculator,

students can avoid time-consuming, tedious procedures and devote a great deal of time

concentrating on understanding concepts, developing higher order thinking skills, and

learning relevant applications. In addition to paper-and-pencil, mental and estimation

skills, the graphing calculator assists student to execute the procedures necessary to

understand and apply the statistical concepts.

the graphing calculators, specifically the TI-NSpire as teaching and learning tool in the

mathematics classroom. Specifically, this study will find out whether the use of the TI-

Nspire graphing calculators by students and teachers in the teaching and learning of the

Statistics topics effective in increasing student achievement.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS

in learning the Statistics topic?

2. What are the effects of TI-Nspire graphing calculator on the Statistics achievement of

Form Four (16 years old) students?

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This study was a case study and employed the quasi-experimental nonequivalent

control-group pretest posttest design. Figure 1 shows the diagrammatic representation of

the nonequivalent control-group pretest posttest design. An X indicates an experimental

treatment, and a “dash” indicates no experimental treatment. The O1s indicate the

measurements made during the pretest while the O2s indicate the measurements made

during the posttest. A pretest and post test was administered to both the control and

experimental groups. The experimental group underwent an intervention where they

learnt mathematics using the TI-Nspire CX graphing calculator for four weeks while the

control group on the other hand learnt mathematics using conventional learning method.

The conventional instruction strategy was a whole-class instruction. Students were not

allowed to use the TI-Nspire graphing calculator. The following are the activities which

were used by the teacher in the classroom; teacher explains the mathematical concepts

using only the blackboard, teacher explains on how to solve mathematical problems

related to the concepts explained, students are given mathematical problems to be

solved individually, teacher handles discussion of problem solving, and teacher gives

the conclusion of the lesson

Experimental O1 X O2

Control O1 - O2

The sample of the study was selected purposely from two secondary schools in Perak

State, Malaysia. Results of Form Four students in the two selected schools were

examined. Students from the average classes were selected as accessible group. For this

purpose, the best and weakest classes were omitted as these groups of students may not

have the same characteristics as those from the average classes. The fish-bowl which is

the most unbiased sampling technique was used to select two intact classes of average

students (Nachmias & Nachmias, 1981).For each school, one of the classes served as

the experimental group (graphing calculator strategy group) while the other class served

as the control group (conventional instructional strategy group). The total number of

students in the sample was 49 in the control group and 46 in the experimental group.

students’ performance on the Statistics topics. Initially, a test specification table for

SAT is prepared by the researcher incorporating the different levels of ability or

achievement according to Blooms Taxonomy. Furthermore, it was constructed based

on the Form Four mathematics syllabus and the Form Four mathematics textbooks. It

was a systematic formal test, using a paper-and-pencil procedure and it produced

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numerical scores. The test covered four main Statistics subtopics vis-à-vis measures of

central tendency and dispersion, concepts of histogram, concepts of frequency polygons

and concepts of cumulative frequency. All the questions are submitted to the validators

for content validation. The reliability index of Cronbach’s coefficient alpha SAT was

determined to be 0.70. Thus, the reliability of the test is considered sufficiently

acceptable.

The SAT was administered to all students in the sample. The test was conducted on two

occasions as a pre-test, and post-test. The purpose of the pre-test was to examine the

students’ prior knowledge in order to provide a baseline before the experiment. The

post-test was used to measure the students’ knowledge after the treatments had been

applied.

The data collected from the research instruments was analyzed quantitatively to answer

the research questions. Data were obtained from the pretest and posttest of Statistics

Achievement. The statistical analysis software SPSS was utilized to calculate the mean

and standard deviation of the scores from the control and experimental groups of each

participating school. In this study, firstly, the independent mean t-test was conducted

on the SAT scores to determine if the difference between the experimental group and

the control group of each participating schools prior to the intervention is significant or

not significant. If the tests show that the difference between the two groups prior to the

treatment is not significant, then the independent mean t-test will be conducted on the

scores of the post-tests of each participating schools to determine whether the difference

between the experimental group and the control group after the treatment is significant

or not significant. If the tests show that the difference between the two groups prior to

the treatment are significant, then the ANCOVA test will be conducted on the scores of

the post-tests of each participating schools to determine whether the difference between

the experimental group and the control group after the treatment is significant or not

significant. The ANCOVA is used in this case as it will make correction to the

difference that existed between the experimental and control groups prior to treatment

so that the difference observed between the experimental and control groups after

treatment is only due to the treatment and not because of the difference that existed

between the two groups earlier (Fraenkal & Wallen, 2006). The use of the ANCOVA

will also enable the study to determine whether the difference between the experimental

and control groups after the treatment is significant or not significant.

Understanding in Statistics Topic

The following examples show how the TI-Nspire graphing calculator can be used to

enhance students’ understanding in the Statistics Topic. There were two examples of

lessons given in this article. Both examples were explained briefly in this article.

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Lesson 1 consisted of two activities. The first activity was to achieve the learning

objective of understanding a set of data by using a measures of central tendency and

measures of dispersion. In this activity, the learning outcomes were students will be able

to

1. Identify the types of statistical data- ungrouped data and grouped data.

2. Explore and calculate various measures of central tendency and measures of

dispersion using TI-Nspire graphing calculator

3. Explore and predict the changes to measures of central tendency and measures

of dispersion using TI-Nspire graphing calculator when the data change.

4. Predict and create formulas for measures of central tendency and measures of

dispersion.

In this first activity (ungroup data), students will create a column for a data using “Add

Lists & Spreadsheet to: New Document”. They will find the statistical calculation of the

data using the statistical menu and the One-Variable Statistics box. Then, teacher needs

to change the values of the data, and try to discuss the changes of each measure of

central tendency and dispersion. Students will explore the possibilities of varying the

data. In addition, teacher can guide students to give the definition of each measure and

can ask students to predict the formula for each measure.

In second activity (group data), student will create four columns for the lower

boundaries, upper boundaries, mid-points and frequencies of the data. To find the

statistical calculation, students will do the same thing as for the ungroup data for

Activity 1.As in Activity 1, teacher needs to change the values of the data, and try to

discuss the changes of each measure of central tendency and dispersion. Students will

explore the possibilities of varying the data. Teacher can also guide students to give the

definition of each measure and can ask students to predict the formula for each measure.

In addition, teacher will ask students to give opinions about the difference between

Activity 1 and 2, and give the conclusion of doing these two activities.

Lesson 2 also consisted of two activities to understand the concept of histogram. The

learning outcomes were students will be able to

1. Draw a histogram for ungrouped data and grouped data with equal class width

using TI-Nspire using TI-Nspire graphing calculator.

2. Interpreting the information from histogram.

3. Explore and analyze the data from the histogram to solve statistics problem.

In the first activity, students will use the same set of ungroup data as in Activity 1 in

Lesson 1(save in file named “score”) to create a histogram. Students will create a

histogram by choosing 5: Add Data & Statistics, and 3: Histogram. Students can draw

the histogram by touching their touchpad and move the cursor to each bar of the

histogram or pressing the menu and choose 4: Analyze and A: Graph Trace. Based on

students’ experience in Activity 1(Lesson 1), the teacher can ask students to change the

class interval of the histogram based on the criteria such as : (i)Size of class interval: 4.

(ii) The lower boundary of the first class interval: 3.5. Then, students can discuss the

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changes that they had explored. As described, the students were able to build their plots

to explore and analyze the data

For activity 2, students will use the set of group data as in Activity 2 in Lesson 1(save in

file named “study time”) to create a new histogram. The teacher will ask students to

discuss the steps that they need to be considered before drawing the histogram for

grouped and ungrouped data. Then, teacher will ask students to do group discussions to

solve problems related to the concepts of histogram in daily life using the TI-Nspire

activity.

Statistics Achievement Test (SAT). The test was a systematic formal test, using a paper-

and-pencil procedure and it produced numerical scores. The total test performance for

the SAT was 34. The test was conducted in the 4 sample schools twice, firstly as a

pretest before the study and again as a posttest at the end of the study.

Table 1. Mean, standard deviation and t-values for both groups for pretest

School Group N Mean s. d t- p-value

value

-4.278 .000

Control 25 15.44 4.29

2.556 .015

Control 24 17.63 4.45

Table 1 shows the means and standard deviations for pre-SAT test for both

experimental and control groups for School A and B. The results show that in pre-SAT

test, the control group had a mean score of 15.44 (standard deviation = 4.29) and the

experimental group had a mean of 10.08 (standard deviation = 4.56). The computed t-

value between the pretests of the control and experimental group is -4.278 at p = .000.

Hypothesis testing shows that this value is significant at p < 0.05. This also mean that

the students in the control and experimental were not similar in their achievement in the

Statistics topic prior to the treatment. For School B, the control group had a mean score

of 17.63 for the pre- SAT test (standard deviation = 4.45) and the experimental group

had a mean of 21.76 (standard deviation = 6.14). The computed t-value between the

pretest of the control and experimental groups is t=2.556 at p = .015. Hypothesis testing

shows that this value is significant at p < 0.05. This indicates that both groups were

differs in their SAT tests prior to the treatment. Therefore, the ANCOVA test is

conducted on the scores of the post-SAT tests to determine whether the difference

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between the experimental group and the control group after the treatment is significant

or not significant for both schools.

Table 2. Mean, standard deviation for experimental and control groups on pre and

posttests of SAT

School Group N Mean s.d

A Covariate Experimental 25 20.24 5.16

(pretest)

Dependent Control 25 14.72 7.04

(Posttest)

B Covariate Experimental 21 23.95 6.58

(pretest)

Dependent Control 24 17.79 5.58

(Posttest)

Means and standard deviations of the students’ achievement in SAT tests based on the

posttest given are shown in Table 2. For School A, the post-SAT test mean for the

experimental group was 20.24 (standard deviation = 5.16) and the posttest mean for the

control group was 14.72 (standard deviation = 7.04). Using the analysis of covariance,

there was a significant difference on the mean performance scores in the SAT between

the experimental and the control groups (F(1, 48) = 10.38, p < 0.05, partial eta squared

= .181). The findings of the ANCOVA showed that the experimental group performed

significantly better that the control group in learning Statistics topic.

For School B, the post-SAT test mean for the experimental group was 23.95 (standard

deviation =6.58) and the posttest mean for the control group was 17.79 (standard

deviation = 5.58). Using the analysis of covariance, there was a significant difference on

the mean performance scores in the SAT between the experimental and the control

groups (F(1, 43) = 5.272, p < 0.05). These findings indicate that the experimental group

significantly performed better than the control group in learning the Statistics topic for

both schools.

DISCUSSIONS

Table 3 presents the summary of the results of the independent means t-test at p< .05 for

2 secondary schools involving students’ statistics achievement in the topic of Statistics.

The pretest results of both School A and B showed that students’ achievement from

both control and experimental groups were not similar. However, the post test results

indicated that students from the experimental group performed better than the control

group. The findings indicate that students who were exposed to the use of graphing

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calculators performed better in the test. Therefore, the findings have shown that the use

of graphing calculators by students in the learning of Statistics is effective in improving

their achievement. This study confirms other earlier studies (Nor’ain et al.,2011;Horton

et al., 2004; Noraini Idris, 2004, Acelajado, 2004; Noraini Idris et al., 2003; Connors &

Snook, 2001; Graham & Thomas, 2000; Hong et al., 2000; Adams, 1997; Smith &

Shotberger, 1997; Quesada & Maxwell, 1994; Ruthven, 1990). The consensus of these

reviews was that students who use graphing calculators displays better understanding of

various mathematical concepts, improved problem solving, and higher scores on

achievement tests.

However, this study contradicted a few study such as by Wilson and Naiman (2004),

Upshaw (1994) and Giamati (1991) where their results have shown that the graphing

calculator group had negative impact on students’ achievement. Their findings showed

that that the graphing calculator group had not acquired effective schemas that enabled

transfer to be enhanced due to the short duration of intervention (two weeks) whereby

the learning of using the graphing calculator may have interfered with learning of the

mathematical content. In this study, a long-term (four weeks) use of the tool was

sufficient in establishing better students’ performances.

Table 3. Summary of the results of the t-tests for the students’ Statistics achievement

(SAT)

A S - S

B S - S

Probably the use of graphing calculators assisted students in their learning of this topic

because statistics concepts can be visualized through these graphing calculators to

enhance their understanding. Also, graphing calculators allow visualization and drawing

of graphs and constructing histogram, frequency polygon, ogive, which can help

students grasp the statistical concepts. The use of graphing calculators provides

opportunities for students to explore statistical concepts and encourage more learning

activities in the mathematics classroom. Hence, supports better grasp and understanding

of statistical concepts, leading to better achievement results.

Another reason for the marginally better performance of the TI-Nspire group could be

that using this tool in learning mathematics makes less cognitive demand (reduction of

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cognitive load) because a larger part of the cognitive process is taken over by the

graphic calculator (Salomon et al., 1992; Pea, 1985). This allows students to focus

attention on the problem to be solved rather than the routine computations, algebraic

manipulations or graphing tedious graphs which require the switching of attention from

the problem to the computation and then back to the problem. This means that

reduction of cognitive load and distribution of cognition in graphing calculator medium

requires students to focus only on one aspect and enhance the understanding of

Statistical tasks. Therefore, more individual will be able to perform statistical tasks and

allow them to work on application problems, thus stimulate students’ interest and

facilitate the teaching and learning of Statistics.

In this study, it is important to note that students are no longer passive absorbers of

information but rather constructive participants in the learning process. The TI-Nspire

graphing calculator allowed them to interact with their environment by exploring and

manipulating the graphing displays, checking the accuracy of the solution or observing

the effect of different parameters in a problem on graphical displays. This findings

confirmed with Bruner (1977) which stressed that active learning environment provide

opportunity for students to understand and remember concepts they had discovered in

their own exploration.

allows more flexibility in terms of student activities. Students are exposed to activities

that encourage exploration of mathematical concepts and this will help students see

mathematics as a ‘fun’ subject.

TI-Nspire graphing calculators also assist teachers in maximizing the teaching time in

the classroom. For example, teachers can very quickly show students different types of

representation of data with the use of graphing calculators and they do not have to waste

time construct the graphs, histogram, frequency polygon etc. manually. This will also

allow teachers to encourage more student-centered activities. Through these activities

students will be encouraged to do more discussion and group work.

In addition, teachers can make the best use of this technology by employing the

“balanced approach”. This approach can be achieved by routinely employing three

strategies that were recommended by Waits and Demana (2000): solves analytically

using traditional paper and pencil algebraic methods, and then supports the results using

a graphing calculator, solves using a graphing calculator, and then confirms analytically

the result using traditional paper and pencil algebraic methods, and solves using

graphing calculator when appropriate (because traditional analytic paper and pencil

methods are tedious and/or time consuming or there is simply no other way!). It is

hoped that this approach will exploit the fullest advantages of the use of graphing

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students in solving mathematical problems.

In this study, integrating the use of TI-Nspire graphing calculator in teaching and

learning of topic, namely the Statistics shows promising implications for the potential of

the tool in teaching Statistics at the Malaysian secondary school level. The findings

from this study have provided valid evidence that to a certain extent, the TI-Nspire

graphing calculator strategy is superior to conventional instruction strategy. Integrating

the use of this tool can be beneficial for students as this instructional strategy has proven

to improve students’ statistical performance.

In the past, students only produced numerical summaries such as the mean, mode,

standard deviation (SD) or range. Making plots was a tedious task, and calculating the

SD seems to have been considered so complicated that often it was not taught until

students were nearly finished with their formal schooling, if ever. Consequently,

students had little experience with variability and understanding its importance, with

inspecting distributions and understanding how they can have the same characteristics

yet be very different, with looking at alternative displays of the same data and

understanding how they each reveal something new about the data. Here, the TI-Nspire

graphing calculators make these ideas accessible. This technology has expanded the

range of graphical and visualization techniques to provide powerful new ways to assist

students in exploring and analyzing data and thinking about statistical ideas, thus

allowing them to focus on interpretation of results and understanding concepts rather

than on computational mechanics.

Furthermore, students will be able to build their histogram using the TI-Nspire graphing

calculators, hence to explore and analyze the data. Students can investigate relationships

between different categories within the data. For example, they can investigate whether

there is any difference in the amount of change carried by boys and girls. This tool also

allows students to move from constructing plots to thinking about the information that

the plots convey. Students can consider more questions, such as describe the difference

between the amount of change carried by boys and by girls, what do you think a

histogram of the amount of change for girls would look like? Why is the X not an

outlier in the box plot for the change carried by boys or girls? These activities will

deepen their understanding of data analysis and came up with the solutions to the

questions given. Furthermore, this learning strategy gives students and teachers more

opportunities for communication, feedback, reflection, critical and reasoning thinking

and hence creating a conducive learning environment.

Acknowledgment

The authors would like to express their appreciation to Malaysian Ministry of Education

for kind contribution of Knowledge Transfer Grant no 057007-2012-004-02 for the

financial support in this research.

28

Jurnal Pendidikan Matematik, 2 (1), 16-31 (2014)

ISSN: 2231-9425

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31

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