This study analyzed geometry problems in four middle-grade mathematics textbook series from Taiwan, Singapore, Finland, and the United States, while exploring the expectations for students’ learning experiences with these problems.
Material and methods:
An analytical framework developed for mathematics textbook problem analysis had three dimensions: representation forms, contextual features, and response types.
The results showed that Taiwanese and Singaporean textbooks contained more problems in combined form, whereas Finnish and the American textbooks contained more problems in verbal and visual forms. The problem distribution across various representation forms was more balanced in the Finnish and Singaporean textbooks than in the Taiwanese and American textbooks. Most problems were non-application and close-ended problems compared to other application and open-ended problems. The Taiwanese textbooks contained the lowest proportion of real-world problems, whereas the American textbooks contained the highest proportion of open-ended problems.
Implications of this study’s findings for textbook developers and future research directions are discussed.