Student Difficulties in Mathematizing Word Problems in Algebra
Al Jupri 1 * , Paul Drijvers 2
More Detail
1 Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia, INDONESIA2 Utrecht University, the NETHERLANDS* Corresponding Author


To investigate student difficulties in solving word problems in algebra, we carried out a teaching experiment involving 51 Indonesian students (12/13 year-old) who used a digital mathematics environment. The findings were backed up by an interview study, in which eighteen students (13/14 year-old) were involved. The perspective of mathematization, i.e., the activity to transform a problem into a symbolic mathematical problem, and to reorganize the mathematical system, was used to identify student difficulties on the topic of linear equations in one variable. The results show that formulating a mathematical model—evidenced by errors in formulating equations, schemas or diagrams—is the main difficulty. This highlights the importance of mathematization as a crucial process in the learning and teaching of algebra.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

EURASIA J Math Sci Tech Ed, 2016, Volume 12, Issue 9, 2481-2502

Publication date: 17 Jul 2016

Article Views: 10445

Article Downloads: 10742

Open Access References How to cite this article