The Effects of Technology on Mathematics Education:
A Meta-Analysis

A Research Project Funded by the Campbell Collaboration, USA

Principal Investigator: Dr. Qing Li,
University of Calgary,

Co-Principal Investigator: Dr. Xin Ma
University of Kansas

There is little doubt that technology has become ubiquitous tools for learning and instruction. The question: “how can technology be used effectively for teaching and learning?”, or more specifically “how does it affect mathematics in k-12 classrooms?” is an important one that has been addressed in many primary studies. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics [NCTM] sets mathematics standards for educators emphasizing the importance of technology. “Technology is essential in teaching and learning mathematics; it influences the mathematics that is taught and enhances students’ learning” (2000). Although technology has the potential to be a powerful and flexible tool for teaching and learning (Li, 2004; Scardamalia & Bereiter, 1996), merely installing the hardware does not produce the desired outcomes (Clark, 1983; Li, 2004). Successful and effective learning of mathematics with technology must rely on a thorough understanding of the effects of technology on mathematics education and sound teaching and learning strategies (Albright & Graf, 1992; Coley, Cradleer, & Engel, 2000).

Research Questions:
The main research questions of our meta-analysis are (a) What is the magnitude of the effects of technology on educational outcomes in mathematics education? and (b) How does the magnitude of the effects fluctuate in response to various study features (e.g., gender, age, race), design features (e.g., randomization, sample size, instrument), and study qualities (e.g., reliability, validity, statistics)?

Anticipated Contribution to Knowledge:

This investigation has theoretical and practical significance. 1) The research will contribute to the knowledge of technology and mathematics education. Grounded in an integration of the available literature, this study will provide a solid empirical knowledge base, of the specific factors in the use of technology to enhance mathematics learning. It will add to the ongoing research aimed to best utilize our resources; 2). This systematic integration of literature of the effects of technology will provide theoretical and practical information about optimal conditions and effective use of technology in mathematics learning and instruction. This information is also useful for different groups including: administrators, teacher and researchers who are interested in mathematics education as well as researchers in different areas (e.g. educational technology and teacher preparation).


Gender and CMC

University of Calgary | Faculty of Education | Educational Technology
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