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“There’s a Reason for all the Numbers”: Using a Literacy Framework in Enabling Education to Bridge the Gap Between Low Adult Numeracy Levels and Undergraduate Mathematics

Abstract

If the Australian government is going to reach its target of 40% of 25–34-year-olds attaining a bachelor degree by 2025, it is critical that enabling courses are properly situated to bridge the gap between the alarmingly low numeracy of the adult population, and the mathematical or quantitative literacy (QL) required for undergraduate study. Yet, however, there is no single, widely accepted model for building the QL of adult learners. Data from students in one enabling course at a regional Australian university was analysed to identify potential congruence between students’ understandings of their mathematics learning and the key elements of the four resources model (4RM), widely used to teach literacy in K-12 environments. Results showed that the 4RM can be mapped on to students’ existing understandings, suggesting the model has strong potential for developing enabling curriculum and helping students prepare for undergraduate mathematics.

Published: 2022-07-06
Pages:21 to 31
Section:Articles
How to Cite
Mann, G. (2022). “There’s a Reason for all the Numbers”: Using a Literacy Framework in Enabling Education to Bridge the Gap Between Low Adult Numeracy Levels and Undergraduate Mathematics. Student Success, 13(2), 21-31. https://doi.org/10.5204/ssj.2326

Author Biography

CQUniversity
Australia Australia

Dr Gemma Mann is a Lecturer in the School of Access Education, Tertiary Education Division at CQUniversity Australia. She teaches Fundamental Mathematics for UniversityIntermediate Mathematics for UniversityTechnical Mathematics for University, and Introductory Physics in the Skills for Tertiary Education Preparatory Studies (STEPS) course and is Access Coordinator for all STEPS students at the Rockhampton North campus providing academic advice and support to students. With a background and PhD in physics and engineering, Gemma’s current research interests centre on mathematics education and student engagement. She is passionate about equity in education and has over 13 years experience in academia and student support enhancing the access and experiences of all students across higher education.

Open Access Journal
ISSN 2205-0795