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Reducing Mistakes in Mathematics Problem Solving through Behavioral Training with a Tablet Computer

Youngjae Kim, Cheolil Lim, Haewook Choi, Minsoo Hahn


This paper proposes a mathematics learning system intended to reduce mistakes in problem solving through behavioral training using a tablet computer. We focused on the case where students' errors were not due to a lack of knowledge but to a simple mistake. Specifically, we consider the context of traditional assessment methods that feature do-it-again feedback that can focus on the simple mistake, as opposed to conceptual knowledge or logic. The proposed scheme aims to identify and visualize measurable features of behavior that leads to mistakes among students engaged in problem-solving activities. As a pilot study, we placed students in one of two groups: high-scoring and average-scoring students on a national standardized mathematics test in the Republic of Korea. Then, using a tablet computer, we collected information on the handwriting and navigation behavior of students during problem solving with millisecond precision and determined its meaningful features. During the experiments, 15 of the 45 participants were trained on certain features of problem-solving behavior, identified in the pilot study. Three problem-solving assessments were performed, and two training sessions were provided. The results showed that students who trained in problem-solving behaviors achieved an improvement of approximately 14 percent, without additional knowledge training.