WWC review of this study

Saxon Elementary Math Program effectiveness study.

Good, K., Bickel, R., & Howley, C. (2006). Charlestown, WV: Edvantia, Inc.

  • Quasi-Experimental Design
    , grades

Reviewed: May 2017

No statistically significant positive
Meets WWC standards with reservations
General Mathematics Achievement outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
Significant? Improvement

Stanford Achievement Test, Ninth Edition (SAT 9) - Math Problem Solving subtest

Saxon Math vs. Business as usual

8 Months

Grade: 2, 3;
745 students





Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.

  • 10% English language learners

  • 45% Free or reduced price lunch

  • Female: 50%
    Male: 50%
  • Race
    Not specified
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    Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, Indiana, North Carolina, Nebraska, Nevada, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington


The study was conducted in 57 schools across 16 states (Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, Indiana, Nebraska, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Washington) in kindergarten through third-grade classrooms in the 2005–06 school year. No further information was provided about the study setting.

Study sample

Forty schools were randomly selected from a list of schools in the United States implementing Saxon Math and invited to participate in the study; 33 schools agreed to participate. In addition, 24 comparison schools agreed to participate in the study. The comparison schools were selected based on their similarity to the intervention schools, including school size, grade-level configuration, students eligible for free and reduced-price meals, racial/ethnic make-up, whether or not they were charter schools, Title I status, geographic location, and setting (for example, urban or rural). Within each study school, one classroom in each grade from K–3 participated in the study. This review focuses on the analytic sample of students who took the Math Problem Solving subtest; this is the only sample that demonstrates baseline equivalence. This analytic sample includes a total of 745 students in grades 2 and 3 comprised of 411 intervention students in 33 schools and 334 comparison students in 24 schools. The study authors do not provide demographic information on the analytic sample, but they do provide information on all students in their study (in grades K–3). In the full sample of students, about 65% were Caucasian, about 10% were English language learners, about 5% were in special education, about 50% were male, and about 45% were eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

Intervention Group

Students in the intervention group used Saxon Math as their core math curriculum in grades K–3 during the 2005–06 school year. The authors did not specify the edition of Saxon Math used. The study assessed implementation fidelity and found that, in general, the Saxon curriculum was implemented as intended, with 70% of teachers routinely using Saxon Math. In the analytic sample examined in this review, most teachers implemented the majority of the lesson components as intended in grades 2 and 3. On average, teachers in second and third grade expected to complete over 95% of Saxon Math lessons by the end of the school year (actual curriculum completion was not assessed). Teachers supplemented Saxon Math with additional materials to reinforce concepts, match state standards, or provide learning extensions.

Comparison Group

Students in the comparison group used a variety of math curricula including Harcourt Brace, Houghton Mifflin, Silver Burdett Ginn, McGraw-Hill, and Scott-Foresman. Specific details about how these curricula were implemented are not provided by the authors. As in the Saxon group, comparison group teachers supplemented their core curriculum with additional materials.

Support for implementation

The study does not provide information on the support for implementation. However, the authors note that intervention schools were using Saxon Math prior to the study.

Reviewed: May 2016

Study sample characteristics were not reported.

Reviewed: May 2016

Study sample characteristics were not reported.

Reviewed: May 2016

Study sample characteristics were not reported.

Reviewed: May 2016

Study sample characteristics were not reported.

Reviewed: May 2016

Study sample characteristics were not reported.

Your export should download shortly as a zip archive.

This download will include data files for study and findings review data and a data dictionary.

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