Using number lines to solve math word problems: A strategy for students with learning disabilities

Nicola Gonsalves, Jennifer Krawec

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Students with learning disabilities (LD) consistently struggle with word problem solving in mathematics classes. This difficulty has made curricular, state, and national tests particularly stressful, as word problem solving has become a predominant feature of such student performance assessments. Research suggests that students with LD perform poorly on word problem-solving items due primarily to deficits in problem representation. Therefore, it is imperative that teachers provide these students with supplemental problem-solving instruction that specifically targets the development of representational strategies. This article describes how one representational strategy, using number lines, can be used to model word problems as part of a comprehensive problem-solving intervention to improve the conceptual understanding of math word problems and, subsequently, the problem-solving performance of students with LD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)160-170
Number of pages11
JournalLearning Disabilities Research and Practice
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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