A broad look at the literature on math word problem-solving interventions for third graders

Sheri Kingsdorf, Jennifer Krawec

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Though research on effective instruction in math word problem solving is prominent at the middle and secondary levels, much less work has been done in elementary grades. In this article, we review the research on varied problem-solving instructional interventions at the third-grade level for students across ability levels. Third grade was chosen as the focus due to the fact that word problemsolving requirements are first introduced into the curriculum and standardized assessment at this point in time. Drawing on quantitative studies using single subject, quasi-experimental, and randomized controlled trial designs, we examine the instructional components and instructional content identified as effective across the 13 studies that met search criteria. Conclusions focus on current understanding of best practices, limitations of the existing research, and important considerations for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1135770
JournalCogent Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2016


  • At-risk
  • Direct Instruction
  • Elementary school
  • Explicit instruction
  • Learning disabilities (LD)
  • Multiple exemplars
  • Problem-type
  • Schema instruction
  • Self-strategies
  • Visual representation models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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