WWC review of this study

Effects of Small-Group Tutoring with and without Validated Classroom Instruction on At-Risk Students' Math Problem Solving: Are Two Tiers of Prevention Better than One? [Word problem tutoring in Tier 1 and Tier 2 vs. word problem tutoring in Tier 2 only]

Fuchs, Lynn S.; Fuchs, Douglas; Craddock, Caitlin; Hollenbeck, Kurstin N.; Hamlett, Carol L.; Schatschneider, Christopher (2008). Journal of Educational Psychology, v100 n3 p491-509 2008. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ807859

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    164
     Students
    , grade
    3

Reviewed: September 2023

At least one finding shows promising evidence of effectiveness
No statistically significant positive
findings
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Whole 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

Math problem solving - immediate, near, & far transfer

Small-group tutoring with and without validated classroom instruction–Fuchs et al. (2008) vs. (Not applicable)

3 Weeks

Tier 2 SBI tutoring with Tier 1 SBI intervention vs. Tier 2 tutoring without Tier 1 SBI intervention;
164 students

43.55

29.20

Yes

--
 
Show Supplemental Findings

Math problem solving - immediate transfer

Small-group tutoring with and without validated classroom instruction–Fuchs et al. (2008) vs. (Not applicable)

3 Weeks

Tier 2 SBI tutoring with Tier 1 SBI intervention vs. Tier 2 tutoring without Tier 1 SBI intervention ;
164 students

72.82

45.41

Yes

--

Math problem solving - near transfer

Small-group tutoring with and without validated classroom instruction–Fuchs et al. (2008) vs. (Not applicable)

3 Weeks

Tier 2 SBI tutoring with Tier 1 SBI intervention vs. Tier 2 tutoring without Tier 1 SBI intervention ;
164 students

37.46

21.77

Yes

--

Math problem solving - far transfer

Small-group tutoring with and without validated classroom instruction–Fuchs et al. (2008) vs. (Not applicable)

3 Weeks

Tier 2 SBI tutoring with Tier 1 SBI intervention vs. Tier 2 tutoring without Tier 1 SBI intervention ;
164 students

20.37

20.42

No

--


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.


  • 1% English language learners

  • Female: 46%
    Male: 54%

  • Urban
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    South
  • Race
    Black
    63%
    White
    28%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic    
    5%
    Not Hispanic or Latino    
    95%

Setting

The study took place in Grade 3 classrooms across four academic years in a metropolitan school district of the Southeast United States. SBI classroom instruction was implemented at the classroom level, and SBI tutoring was implemented in small groups.

Study sample

Of the 164 AR students in this contrast, 46 percent were female, 73 percent were eligible for subsidized lunch, 65 percent were African American, 28 percent were European America, and seven percent identified as other. Also, five percent were Hispanic, one percent were English language learners and 12 percent were in special education.

Intervention Group

The classroom-level SBI instruction comprised three weeks of researcher-designed general math problem-solving instruction plus 13 weeks of researcher-designed SBI instruction. Cohorts 1 and 4 used the standard version of SBI classroom instruction. Cohorts 2 and 3 used a variant designed to strengthen Hot Math SBI. The 13 weeks of classroom SBI instruction included four three-week SBI units each with six lessons. Sessions lasted between 30 and 40 minutes totaling roughly 200 minutes of SBI instruction per unit and 856 minutes of SBI instruction across all four units. In this contrast, both groups received SBI tutoring for four three-week SBI units in small groups of 2 to 4 students. Three tutoring sessions were conducted each week with two cumulative review sessions. Each tutoring session lasted 20 to 30 minutes or roughly 225 minutes per unit and 940 minutes across all units. With respect to delivery, research assistants and not classroom teachers delivered the researcher-designed general problem-solving strategies instruction during the first 3 weeks of classroom instruction. Research assistants also delivered classroom and tutoring SBI during the final 13 weeks of instruction.

Comparison Group

For this contrast, the control group received no classroom-level SBI intervention. As with the intervention group, the control group in this contrast received SBI tutoring for four three-week SBI units in small groups of 2 to 4 students. Three tutoring sessions were conducted each week with two cumulative review sessions. Each tutoring session lasted 20 to 30 minutes or roughly 225 minutes per unit and 940 minutes across all units. With respect to delivery, research assistants and not classroom teachers delivered the researcher-designed general problem-solving strategies instruction during the first 3 weeks of classroom instruction. Research assistants also delivered classroom and tutoring SBI during the final 13 weeks of instruction.

Support for implementation

All research assistants (RAs) received a one day training session that provided with instructions, demonstrations, and scripted materials to study. RAs then practiced in pairs before conducting one lesson for a project coordinator who graded the delivery of the instruction. RAs were also given a three-hour training before the start of each unit, and all sessions were audiotaped from which RAs received corrective feedback.

 

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