Paper Type

Master's Thesis


College of Education and Human Services

Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)



First Advisor

Dr. Paul D. Eggen

Second Advisor

Dr. Mary L. Grimes

Third Advisor

Dr. Janet E. Bosnick


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect that heuristics instruction for certain strategies and skills used in the solution of non-routine mathematical problems would have on problem solving behavior. It was conjectured that subjects given compressed but explicit instruction in problem solving strategies would exhibit higher achievement than subjects who did not receive such explicit instruction. Subjects were elementary education student volunteers from the University of North Florida. They were randomly assigned to experimental and control groups for instruction. A pretest and a posttest were administered to collect the data to evaluate this experimental design. The null hypothesis that there would be no difference in the mean gain scores between the experimental and control groups could not be rejected at the .05 level of significance. The results of this study indicate that successful generalization of complex concepts should not be expected following such a short instructional period.

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