
06430668
j
2015c.00143
Koban, Lori
Consequences of FOIL for undergraduates.
Int. J. Math. Educ. Sci. Technol. 46, No. 2, 205222 (2015).
2015
Taylor \& Francis, Abingdon, Oxfordshire
EN
C35
C25
D45
mnemonic
transfer between context
mathematical concepts
conceptual understanding
attitudes
doi:10.1080/0020739X.2014.950706
Summary: FOIL is a wellknown mnemonic that is used to find the product of two binomials. We conduct a large sample ($n= 252$) observational study of firstyear college students and show that while the FOIL procedure leads to the accurate expansion of the product of two binomials for most students who apply it, only half of these students exhibit conceptual understanding of the procedure. We generalize this FOIL dichotomy and show that the ability to transfer a mathematical property from one context to a less familiar context is related to both procedural success and attitude towards math.