
06645071
j
2016f.00920
Ye, Ai
Resnick, Ilyse
Hansen, Nicole
Rodrigues, Jessica
Rinne, Luke
Jordan, Nancy C.
Pathways to fraction learning: numerical abilities mediate the relation between early cognitive competencies and later fraction knowledge.
J. Exp. Child Psychol. 152, 242263 (2016).
2016
Elsevier, Amsterdam
EN
F43
C33
C43
fraction learning
cognitive competency
numerical skills
magnitude understanding
calculation
mediation analysis
doi:10.1016/j.jecp.2016.08.001
Summary: The current study investigated the mediating role of numberrelated skills in the developmental relationship between early cognitive competencies and later fraction knowledge using structural equation modeling. Fifthgrade numerical skills (i.e., whole number line estimation, nonsymbolic proportional reasoning, multiplication, and long division skills) mapped onto two distinct factors: {\it magnitude reasoning} and {\it calculation.} Controlling for participants' ($N=536$) demographic characteristics, these two factors fully mediated relationships between thirdgrade general cognitive competencies (attentive behavior, verbal and nonverbal intellectual abilities, and working memory) and sixthgrade fraction knowledge (concepts and procedures combined). However, specific developmental pathways differed by type of fraction knowledge. Magnitude reasoning ability fully mediated paths from all four cognitive competencies to knowledge of fraction concepts, whereas calculation ability fully mediated paths from attentive behavior and verbal ability to knowledge of fraction procedures (all with medium to large effect sizes). These findings suggest that there are partly overlapping, yet distinct, developmental pathways from cognitive competencies to general fraction knowledge, fraction concepts, and fraction procedures.