“Statistically Significant” Gains Recognized in Program Solving, Understanding of Mathematics Concepts and Communications

January 24, 2013 – The U.S. Department of Education’s What Works Clearinghouse has issued a report validating research that Pearson’s enVisionMATH elementary school curriculum increases student achievement above and beyond other K-6 math programs.

The enVisionMATH program reviewed by the What Works Clearinghouse is currently the #1 math curriculum in U.S. schools, with more than six million students learning elementary mathematics with the program. enVisionMATH is designed for students in grades K–6 and seeks to help students develop an understanding of math concepts through problem-based instruction, small-group interaction, and visual learning with a focus on reasoning and modeling.

The What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) report confirmed findings of an independent study by Planning, Research & Evaluation Services (PRES) Associates, noting that the randomized control study “provides strong evidence of enVisionMATH’s effectiveness.” The What Works Clearinghouse, an arm of the Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences, validated that enVisionMATH had “statistically significant and positive effects” for students as compared to their peers using other math programs.

Pearson’s Director of Academic Research Marcy Baughman said, “The significant gains experienced by enVisionMATH students in the research study affirm the instructional design of our enVisionMATH curriculum. Recognition by the What Works Clearinghouse of the strong research supporting enVisionMATH is a critical validation for schools that are now choosing math programs that will prepare their students for college and careers in a technology-driven global marketplace.” She added, “Our core enVisionMATH program contains all of the critical elements required by the Common Core State Standards, including the required focus on ‘conceptual understanding, procedural skill and fluency, and applications’.”

The WWC report noted that when examining the results by areas of mathematics achievement, the improvement index showed significant increases in Concepts & Communications and Math Concepts & Problem-Solving. For example, the average enVisionMATH student:

• outperformed peers using other math programs by nine percentiles in Concepts & Communications;
• eight percentiles in Math Concepts & Problem Solving;
• seven percentiles in Problem-Solving & Reasoning Skills;
• and six percentiles in Math Computation.

The What Works Clearinghouse validated the randomized control study by Dr. Mariam Azin, president of the research group PRES Associates, who conducted the independent research study of enVisionMATH over three years, concluding in 2009. When issuing her research report, she said, “These findings are quite impressive. In all of my years conducting educational program efficacy studies, I have never seen such consistency in results across all different student populations as I saw with the enVisionMATH curriculum. In our study, we found that the enVisionMATH students significantly outperformed their peers with stronger effects occurring over time, meaning that student gains in the second year were even larger than those seen in the first year. The research results indicate that the longer students learned with enVisionMATH, the greater their gains in math concepts, problem solving and communication.”

enVisionMATH Common Core
IN 2011, Pearson announced the newest release of the program, enVisionMATH Common Core, available in print, blended, or all-digital formats. In just this past year, more than 3000 schools have chosen the new enVisionMATH Common Core for meeting the Common Core State Standards.

Mathematics educator Dr. Francis “Skip” Fennell, a past President of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and a member of the Writing Team for the Common Core State Standards, is a co-author of enVisionMATH. He said “In considering the design and development of enVisionMATH Common Core, we wanted to ensure that the critical elements of the Mathematical Practices and the content domains were not only evident but emphasized. We also recognized how focus, coherence, and rigor could serve (and they did!) as guideposts for our work and the program’s integrity. He added, “This recognition from the What Works Clearinghouse is an important validation of all of our efforts, but particularly for school decision-makers.”

Holliston Elementary School in Massachusetts participated in the independent research study of enVisionMATH. The School’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Specialist Pat Rourke said, “The enVisionMATH program has given us a big head start in implementation of the Common Core State Standards. The Standards’ deep focus on ensuring that we are teaching our students how to think mathematically — and learn that there is more than one way to solve a problem — is the core of the enVisionMATH program. So, we are very pleased to see — but certainly not surprised — that the Department of Education’s What Works Clearinghouse has validated the effectiveness of enVisionMATH. It has dramatically changed the teaching and learning of mathematics at our school.”

To view the What Works Clearinghouse report, go to: http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc/pdf/intervention_reports/wwc_envisionmath_011513.pdf

To view the PRES Associates Research Study on enVisionMATH, go to: http://www.pearsoned.com/wp-content/uploads/envisionmath-efficacy-report-year-2.pdf

To learn more about enVisionMATH Common Core, go to: http://www.pearsonschool.com/index.cfm?locator=PS1zHe

About Pearson
Pearson, the world’s leading learning company, has global reach and market-leading businesses in education, business information and consumer publishing (NYSE: PSO).
About PRES Associates
Specializing in the fields of education and human services, independent research and evaluation firm PRES (Planning, Research & Evaluation Services) Associates provides services designed to yield useful, objective, and accurate information required in a results-oriented world. For more than 20 years, PRES has been conducting research and evaluations studies for educational agencies at the local, state and federal level, nonprofit organizations and for-profit entities.
Contact: kate.miller@pearson.com –1.800.745.8489

About the Author:

Lisa Wolfe