Washington, DC–November 6, 2006. The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the principal trade association for the code and digital content industry, today affirmed in its testimony before the U.S. Department of Education’s National Math Panel that technology is critical in helping students improve their mathematical understanding and achievement. SIIA’s leadership in issues affecting education and technology was recognized by its invitation to present to this advisory committee to President Bush.

SIIA’s Director of Education Policy, Mark Schneiderman, was invited to present a framework and context for understanding what, how and why technologies are being used today in mathematics curriculum and instruction. Schneiderman’s testimony outlined drivers of technology use in schools, a framework of math technology types and uses, and several research issues.

“Differentiated instruction is perhaps the most promising use of technology to increase student achievement,” stated Schneiderman in his written testimony. “Sophisticated software provides educators the tools to dynamically assess students, identify learning needs in real-time, align curriculum and instruction to fill those gaps, and deliver computer- or teacher-based instruction to address each student’s unique learning needs.” Schneiderman also cited interactive multimedia software that helps represent mathematical concepts in alternative, reinforcing ways and adapts to the learner, better engaging today’s digital-native students.

Also invited to present on the math technology research at the Palo Alto, California hearing were SIIA members Carnegie Learning, Texas Instruments and the Mind Institute. These, and other, SIIA members are investing in research on math instructional technologies and are interested in the Panel’s findings in order to inform their product development. SIIA called on the Panel to recommend additional public-private partnerships to further math technology research, including the underlying curriculum and pedagogy.

“Research into technology’s impact on student achievement and other educational goals is promising, added Schneiderman. “At the same time, as in all other areas of education, there is much more to be learned.”

This testimony is posted in full on SIIA’s web site at www.siia.net/govt.

About SIIA

The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) is the principal trade association for the software and digital content industry. SIIA provides global services in government relations, business development, corporate education and intellectual property protection to more than 800 leading software and information companies. For further information, visit www.siia.net.

About SIIA’s Education Division

SIIA’s Education Division serves and represents over 150 member companies that provide software, digital content and other technologies that address educational needs. The Division shapes and supports the industry by providing leadership, advocacy, business development opportunities and critical market information. SIIA provides a neutral business forum for its members to understand business models, technological advancements, market trends, and best practices. With the leadership of the Division Board and collaborative efforts with educators and other stakeholders, the Division undertakes initiatives to enhance the use of educational technology and the success of SIIA members.

About the National Math Panel

The National Mathematics Advisory Panel was created on April 16, 2006 by an executive order of President Bush. Based on the influential National Reading Panel, the math advisory board will convene experts to advise the President and U.S. Secretary of Education Spellings on the effectiveness of various approaches to teaching math and the research base to improve instructional methods. Among the topics to be addressed in the panel’s report: (1) the skills needed for students to learn algebra and be ready for higher levels of mathematics; (2) the appropriate design of systems for delivering math instruction that combine elements of learning, curricula, instruction, teacher training, and standards, assessments and accountability; and (3) research needs in support of mathematics education. For further information, visit http://www.ed.gov.

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