
06087479
j
2012e.00513
Chinnappan, Mohan
Ekanayake, Madduma B.
Brown, Christine
Knowledge use in the construction of geometry proof by Sri Lankan students.
Int. J. Sci. Math. Educ. 10, No. 4, 865887 (2012).
2012
Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht
EN
E54
G44
domainspecific and general knowledge
geometry proof development
mathematical schemas
mathematics cognition and instruction
mathematics teacher education
doi:10.1007/s1076301192988
Summary: Within the domain of geometry, proof and proof development continues to be a problematic area for students. {\it M. T. Battista} [in F. Lester (ed.), Second handbook of research on mathematics teaching and learning 2. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing. 843908 (2007)] suggested that the investigation of knowledge components that students bring to understanding and constructing geometry proofs could provide important insights into the above issue. This issue also features prominently in the deliberations of the 2009 International Commission on Mathematics Instruction Study on the learning and teaching of proofs in mathematics, in general, and geometry, in particular. In the study reported here, we consider knowledge use by a cohort of 166 Sri Lankan students during the construction of geometry proofs. Three knowledge components were hypothesised to influence the students' attempts at proof development: geometry content knowledge, general problemsolving skills and geometry reasoning skills. Regression analyses supported our conjecture that all 3 knowledge components played important functions in developing proofs. We suggest that whilst students have to acquire a robust body of geometric content knowledge, the activation and the utilisation of this knowledge during the construction of proof need to be guided by general problemsolving and reasoning skills.