U.S. students typically encounter easier math curricula than those in many other nations, a new study finds, with wide differences also seen across states and school districts.
The analysis, published this month in the American Journal of Education, draws on data from the 1999 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study, or TIMSS, which included 13 U.S. school districts, nine states, and nearly 40 nations.
The variations seen in math curriculum were correlated with students’ overall 8th grade math achievement. Students in states and districts with less-demanding math coursework performed worse than those given a more challenging curriculum.
A version of this article appeared in the May 11, 2011 edition of Education Week as Math Curricula