WWC review of this study

Effects of Super Solvers fractions intervention for at-risk third graders: A research report [Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs control]

Wang, A. Y., Fuchs, L. S., Preacher, K. J., Fuchs, D., Malone, A. S., & Pachmayr, R. (2019). Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University. http://frg.vkcsites.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/Effects-of-Super-Solvers-Fractions-Intervention-for-At-Risk-Third-Graders.pdf.

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    58
     Students
    , grade
    3

Reviewed: February 2023

At least one finding shows promising evidence of effectiveness
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Rational Numbers Computation outcomes—Statistically significant positive effect found for the domain
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Fraction Battery-Revised Addition and Subtraction (Malone & Fuchs, 2017)

Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs. Business as usual

1 Month

Fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group vs. control contrast;
58 students

4.74

1.60

Yes

 
 
34
 
Rational Numbers Knowledge outcomes—Statistically significant positive effect found for the domain
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

13 released items from 1990-2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)

Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs. Business as usual

1 Month

Fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group vs. control contrast;
58 students

6.01

3.99

Yes

 
 
29
 
Rational Numbers Magnitude Understanding/Relative Magnitude Understanding outcomes—Statistically significant positive effect found for the domain
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Fraction Battery-Revised Ordering (Malone & Fuchs, 2017)

Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs. Business as usual

1 Month

Fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group vs. control contrast;
58 students

5.39

2.25

Yes

 
 
39
 

Fraction Battery-Revised Number Line (Malone & Fuchs, 2017)

Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs. Business as usual

1 Month

Fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group vs. control contrast;
58 students

9.06

5.24

Yes

 
 
36
 
Rational Numbers Word Problems/Problem Solving outcomes—Statistically significant positive effect found for the domain
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Fraction Battery-Revised Word Problems (Malone & Fuchs, 2017)

Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs. Business as usual

1 Month

Fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group vs. control contrast;
58 students

10.35

5.10

Yes

 
 
31
 
Whole Numbers Computation outcomes—Statistically significant positive effect found for the domain
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Fraction Battery-Revised Single-Digit Multiplication (Malone & Fuchs, 2017)

Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction vs. Business as usual

1 Month

Fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group vs. control contrast;
58 students

18.66

12.11

Yes

 
 
36
 


Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • 28% English language learners

  • Female: 48%
    Male: 52%
  • Race
    Black
    53%
    Other or unknown
    38%
    White
    9%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic    
    34%
    Not Hispanic or Latino    
    66%

Setting

Students in the study attended one of 29 classooms in 8 schools in a large, metropolitan school district. The authors do not reveal where the school district was located.

Study sample

The intervention group was 48.3% male. The racial and ethnic breakdown of the intervention group was 62.1% African American, 6.9% White, 27.6% Hispanic, and 3.4% other. 55.2% of the intervention group qualified for the Federal School Lunch Program. 6.9% of the intervention group children had a school-identified learning disability. 24.1% of the intervention group students were English Learner students. The comparison group was 55.2% male. The racial and ethnic breakdown of the comparison group was 44.8% African American, 10.3% White, 41.4% Hispanic, and 3.4% other. 51.7% of the comparison group qualified for the Federal School Lunch Program. 3.4% of the comparison group children had a school-identified learning disability, 10.3% had a school-identified speech or language delay, and 6.9% had another school-identified disability. 31.0% of the comparison group students were English Learner students.

Intervention Group

For this contrast, the intervention condition is the fraction magnitude + word problem + self-regulation group (the Super Solvers with embedded self-regulation instruction group). The intervention included 13 weeks of 35-minute explicit instruction, delivered to pairs of students 3 times per week. The fraction magnitude component involved comparing, ordering, placing fractions on number lines, and equivalencies. The word problem component involved schema-based instruction with a focus on comparing and change fraction word problems. The self-regulation component involved students evaluating progress and creating plans to reach goals. Every two weeks, students graphed their score, set a goal to beat their highest score, and created a plan for how to meet their goal.

Comparison Group

Students in the comparison group received business as usual math instruction, 89-90 minutes per day, 5 days a week. Eight control students also received the school's supplemental math intervention. The control condition differed from the intervention condition in 4 ways: (1) the control group focused on part-whole understanding, (2) teachers used number lines and pictures to help students understand relative FM, (3) the range of fractions was not restricted, and (4) word problem instruction focused on operational procedures and drawing pictures.

Support for implementation

Tutors were observed in-person as well as audiotaped to check for fidelity of implementation. They attended weekly meetings. During these meetings, training was provided for upcoming sessions, an opportunity was provided to engage in problem-solving about any issues they were having, and they received feedback.

 

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