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All Published Research and Evaluation on CMP

A large body of literature exists that focuses on or is related to the Connected Mathematics Project. Here, you will find articles on CMP that we have compiled over the past thirty years. These include research, evaluation and descriptions from books, book chapters, dissertations, research articles, reports, conference proceedings, and essays. Some of the topics are:

  • student learning in CMP classrooms
  • teacher's knowledge in CMP classrooms
  • CMP classrooms as research sites
  • implementation strategies of CMP
  • longitudinal effects of CMP in high school math classes
  • students algebraic understanding
  • student proportional reasoning
  • student achievement
  • student conceptual and procedural reasoning and understanding
  • professional development and teacher collaboration
  • comparative studies on different aspects of mathematics curricula
  • the CMP philosophy and design, development, field testing and evaluation process for CMP

This list is based on thorough reviews of the literature and updated periodically. Many of these readings are available online or through your local library system. A good start is to paste the title of the publication into your search engine. Please contact us if you have a suggestion for a reading that is not on the list, or if you need assistance locating a reading.


Banilower, E. R. (2010). Connected Mathematics, 2nd Edition: A three-year study of student outcomes. Chapel Hill, NC: Horizon Research, Inc.

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Bouck, E. C., & Kulkarni, G. (2009). Middle-School Mathematics Curricula and Students with Learning Disabilities: Is One Curriculum Better? Learning Disability Quarterly, 32(4), 228-244.

ABSTRACT: Little is known about how best to teach mathematics to students with learning disabilities. This study explored the performance and self-reported calculator use of 13 sixth-grade and 15 seventh-grade students with learning disabilities educated in either standards-based or traditional mathematics curricula on multiple-choice and open-ended assessments. Across both groups of students: (a) curriculum did not impact the number of problems students answered correctly, (b) students answered more problems correctly on the multiple-choice than on the open ended assessments, (c) students self-reported low percentages of calculator use, and (d) curriculum did not impact students' self-reported calculator use. Overall, the results suggest that students with learning disabilities are not advantaged or disadvantaged by receiving either a traditional or a standards-based mathematics curriculum.

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Bouck, E. C., Joshi, G. S., & Johnson, L. (2013). Examining calculator use among students with and without disabilities educated with different mathematical curricula. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 83(3), 369-385.

ABSTRACT: This study assessed if students with and without disabilities used calculators (four function, scientific, or graphing) to solve mathematics assessment problems and whether using calculators improved their performance. Participants were sixth and seventh-grade students educated with either National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded or traditional mathematics curriculum materials. Students solved multiple choice and open-ended problems based on items from the State’s released previous assessments. A linear mixed model was conducted for each grade to analyze the factors impacting students’ self-reported calculator use. Chi Square tests were also performed on both grade’s data to determine the relationship between using a calculator and correctly solving problems. Results suggested only time as a main factor impacting calculator use and students who self-reported using a calculator were more likely to answer questions correctly. The results have implications for practice given the controversy over calculator use by students both with and without disabilities.

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Bouck, E. C., Kulkarni, G., & Johnson, L. (2011). Mathematical performance of students with disabilities in middle school: Standards-based and traditional curricula. Remedial and Special Education, 32(5), 429–443. 

ABSTRACT: This study investigated the impact of mathematics curriculum (standards based vs. traditional) on the performance of sixth and seventh grade students with disabilities on multiple-choice and open-ended assessments aligned to one state’s number and operations and algebra standards. It also sought to understand factors affecting student performance on assessments: ability status (students with and without disabilities), curriculum (standards based vs. traditional), and assessment type (multiple choice vs. open ended). In all, 146 sixth grade students and 149 seventh grade students participated in the study. A linear mixed model for each grade revealed students with disabilities did not perform better in either curriculum. Furthermore, curriculum type was not a significant factor affecting student performance; however, ability status, time, and assessment type were. The implications of these results are discussed.

Bray, M. S. (2005). Achievement of eighth grade students in mathematics after completing three years of the Connected Mathematics Project. (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from Dissertation Abstracts International, 66(11). (ProQuest ID No. 1031063341)

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to examine the three-year effect of the Connected Mathematics Project (CMP) on the mathematics achievement of middle school students in a southeastern Tennessee public school district. This was accomplished by (1) comparing the mathematics achievement of eighth graders who have completed three years of CMP with their mathematics achievement after completing one and two years of CMP; (2) comparing the achievement of male and female students during the same period of time; and (3) comparing the mathematics achievement of historically underrepresented students after completing one, two, and three years of CMP.

In order to provide for a richer analysis of the CMP experience, the overall design employed quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The quantitative section of the study examined the mathematical achievement of almost 2,900 of the 2001-2002 eighth graders, over 3,000 of the 2000-2001 seventh graders, and over 3,100 1999- 2000 sixth graders as evidenced by their Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP) test scores. The qualitative segment of the study explored the experiences of the textbook adoption committee members, teachers, administrators, and parents.

Using the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program mathematics total battery test score as the dependent variable, there was no significant difference between the mathematics achievement of students completing one or two years of CMP. However, there was a significant difference in the mathematics achievement between students completing three years of CMP when compared to their mathematics scores after one and two years. There was also a significant difference between male and female students after completing one and two years of CMP but no significant difference was detected after the completion of three years. Though there was a significant difference revealed in the achievement between African Americans and Non African Americans after completing one, two, and three years of CMP the gap closed slightly after completing three years. Overall, CMP students performed better on the state achievement assessment the longer they were being instructed using the standards based curriculum.

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Breyfogle, M. L., & Lynch, C. M. (2010). Van Hiele revisited. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 16(4), 232-238.

ABSTRACT: Assessment is a tool used in the classroom as a way to deepen students' learning and to allow the educator to make informed decisions regarding instruction. In this article, the authors focus on the role of assessment, both in terms of teachers and students, while developing students' understanding of geometry. In particular, the authors are interested in using authentic assessment to develop students' geometric thought using the van Hiele model. The van Hiele model of the development of geometric thought was created in the 1980s by two Dutch middle school teachers and researchers, Dina van Hiele-Geldhof and Pierre van Hiele. The model described levels of understanding through which students progress in relation to geometry (Crowley 1987). The authors examine authentic assessment and its use in encouraging students to progress along the van Hiele levels. To analyze students' geometric thinking, the authors suggest using both formative and summative assessments to move students along the van Hiele model of thought. (Contains 4 figures and 2 tables.)

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Burdell, C., & Smith III, J. P. (2001). “The math is different, but I can deal”: Studying students’ experiences in a reform-based mathematics curriculum. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Seattle, WA.

ABSTRACT: The research reported in this paper describes the mathematical experiences of 9 students who moved from a traditional mathematics program in junior high school to a high school mathematics program structured by current reforms in curriculum and teaching. We will refer to the high school site of this work as Logan High (though the name is fictitious). Logan has for some years implemented the Core-Plus Mathematics Project materials for most of its grade 9–12 students, including some (but not all) students who come out of the “advanced” mathematics track in the junior high school. We recruited 24 Logan student volunteers starting in January 2000 and have tracked these students in their mathematics work for 2.5 semesters.

We report on the experiences of 9 of these students, drawing on a maximum of 3 semesters of mathematics coursework (Spring 2000, Fall 200, and Spring 2001). We have analyzed their mathematical experiences along 4 dimensions: (1) performance in mathematics, (2) disposition towards the subject, (3) approach to learning the subject, and (4) differences students see between traditional and Core-Plus mathematics curricula and teaching. All of our 9 students reported differences between their past and present mathematics programs as they moved into Core-Plus, but in only 2 cases was there any significant change in performance across the curricular shift.

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Cain, J. S. (2002). An evaluation of the Connected Mathematics Project. Journal of Educational Research, 95(4), 224-33.

ABSTRACT: Evaluated the Connected Mathematics Project (CMP), a middle school reform mathematics curriculum used in Louisiana's Lafayette parish. Analysis of Iowa Test of Basic Skills and Louisiana Education Assessment Program mathematics data indicated that CMP schools significantly outperformed non-CMP schools. Surveys of teachers and students showed that both groups believed the program was helping students become better problem solvers.

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Cavanagh, J. M. (2012). An organizational case study: The impact of an initiation, implementation, and institutionalization of a curricular change (Doctoral dissertation). Available from ProQuest Dissertations and Theses data-base. (UMI No. 1015379520)

ABSTRACT: Successful change in schools is planned, expected and managed with the objective focused on benefiting the students, not just converting the staff. This investigation is a case study of a public school district that opted to implement curricular change following an examination of the district's performance toward adequate yearly progress. This case study utilized a quantitative design to address: the process and impact of an initiation, implementation and institutionalization of a district level curricular change, the roles that emerged among participants in this process, the influence of stakeholders, the dynamics and processes of change, and the impact of the curricular change on student achievement. Surveys were distributed to 18 teachers, three middle level administrators and four central office personnel in order to analyze the organizational processes and the perceived roles of stakeholders in the curricular change process. The overall participation rate was 68%. Surveys were analyzed to examine three themes: if the curricular change process was triggered by external stakeholders that had legitimate claims on the operation of the organization, if the curricular change process was initiated and dictated by the high level district stakeholders, and if the curricular change process was implemented and carried through by high level internal stakeholders. Additionally, Pennsylvania System of School Assessment math scores for eighth grade were collected and analyzed comparing four groups based upon the amount of Connected Mathematics Project instruction the students received. Analysis of Pennsylvania System of School Assessment eighth grade math scores revealed that scores increased progressively with each additional year of Connect Mathematics Project completion. Further research involving the surveying of high school teachers, as well as review of eleventh grade Pennsylvania System of School Assessment math scores may be helpful. Review of additional performance indicators, such as classroom mathematics grades may also be beneficial.

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Collins, A. M. (2002). What happens to student learning in mathematics when a multifaceted, long-term professional development model to support Standards-based curricula is implemented in an environment of high stakes testing? (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from Dissertation Abstracts International, 65(2). (ProQuest ID No. 765336031)

ABSTRACT: Assessment and accountability have created a high-stakes environment for districts, schools, teachers, and students. Assessment is driving most educational decisions. In Massachusetts graduation is contingent upon passing the mathematics and English language arts subtests of the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS). Teachers in schools where 30% or more students fail MCASare required to take a mathematics proficiency test. Middle schools not exhibiting improvement in their mathematics scores are identified as under-performing and are subject to interventions by the Department of Education. Not surprisingly, students in urban districts score significantly lower than those in more affluent suburban districts. To date only urban schools have been declared under-performing. It is within this environment of high-stakes testing and As repercussions that this study was undertaken.

In an effort to change the unsuccessful experiences of many urban students, the Noyce Foundation and Raytheon Company made a commitment to funding a long-term professional development intervention. This study investigates the impact of that sustained professional development program in one urban district. The professional development was designed to support the implementation of The Connected Mathematics Project (CMP) and to assess its impact on student learning. This dissertation presents a quantitative comparison between student scores on two standardized tests in schools whose teachers availed themselves of all available professional development surrounding the implementation process for CMP with schools whose teachers chose only to participate in contractually mandated district professional development.

Results indicate that students in schools whose teachers received sustained professional development designed to meet the needs of the participating teachers performed significantly higher on both the MCAS and a nationally normed achievement test, Terra Nova, than did those students whose teachers had not participated in consistent professional development. Evidence is included to document the positive impact on student achievement as a result of changing teacher practice and beliefs through mentoring and coaching in teachers' own classrooms.

Covington Clarkson, L. M. (2001). The effects of the Connected Mathematics Project on middle school mathematics achievement. (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from Dissertation Abstracts International, 61(12). (ProQuest ID No. 727079071)

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to examine the three-year effect of the Connected Mathematics Project (CMP) on the mathematics achievement of middle school students in an urban school district. This was accomplished by (1) comparing the mathematics achievement of eighth graders who have completed three years of CMP with the achievement of eighth graders who have completed three-years of a traditional curriculum; (2) comparing the interaction and communication patterns in the two types of classrooms; and (3) comparing the mathematics achievement of historically underrepresented students in both curricula. In order to provide for a richer analysis of the CMP experience, the overall design employed quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The quantitative section of the study examined the mathematical achievement of 700 of the 1999- 2000 eighth graders as evidenced by their State Basic Standards Test(BST) scores. The qualitative segment of the study explored the experiences of the primary participants, the teacher and the students.

Using the State Basic Standards Test as the dependent variable, there was no significant difference between the mathematics achievement of CMP students and that of traditional students after three years of the respective curricula. The achievement gap between CMP Caucasian students and CMP African American students was smaller than the achievement gap between these groups in the traditional curricula. The classroom interaction and communication patterns were very different. CMP classrooms provided more opportunities to learn mathematics than traditional classes. Moreover, CMP students demonstrated algebraic reasoning skills at the same level as the traditional students and demonstrated conceptual understanding through the use of multiple strategies at a higher level than traditional students. Overall, CMP students had a higher level of satisfaction and more positive experiences in their mathematics classes than did traditional students.

Durkin, N. M. (2005). Using Connected Math program: Its impact on the Delaware State Testing scores of 8th-grade students at Milford Middle School. (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from Dissertation Abstracts International, 66(4). (ProQuest ID No. 913516241)

ABSTRACT: This study was designed to investigate the impact of the Connected Math Project curriculum on the student achievement of eighth grade students participating in the Delaware State Testing Program from 1998-2004. The study included an investigation of overall student achievement of students participating in the Connected Math Project as well as specific subgroup populations such as the Black and Special Education students

The investigation revealed that overall student performance and subgroup population performance has increased since the first administration of the Delaware State Testing Program in 1998. A pair wise comparison probability for all test years indicates the increase in mean math scale scores was significant. However, additional pair wise comparison probabilities indicate the percentages of students meeting the state math standard are significant for comparison of test year 2000 with 2003 only. This indicates that although student mean math scale scores are increasing the percentage of students meeting the standard has not increased significantly. Student scores may be approaching the standard but not meeting or exceeding the standard. Pair wise comparison probabilities for the subgroup populations Black and Special Education also indicate a significant increase in the mean math scale scores but not a significant increase in the percentage of students meeting the standard.

Read A Taxonomy for Categorizing Generalizations

Eddy, R. M., Berry, T., Aquirre, N., Wahlstrand, G., Ruitman, T., & Mahajan, N. (2008). The effects of Connected Mathematics Project 2 on student performance: Randomized control trial. Claremont, CA: Claremont Graduate University Institute of Organizational and Program Evaluation Research. Pearson's CMP2 Efficacy Study

Claremont Graduate University (CGU) conducted an efficacy trial of the Connected Mathematics Project 2 (CMP2) curriculum in sixth grade classrooms (across six schools in three states including more than 1,000 students), during the 2007-08 school year. This study was funded by Pearson Education. This report provides an overall description of the study as well as a summary of results based on the major outcome measures. The results are drawn from student performance on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS), the Balanced Assessment in Mathematics (BAM), and responses on a student attitudes survey. 

Ellis, J. D., Kupczynski, L., Mundy, A., & Jones, D. (2012). Middle school mathematics: A study of three programs in south Texas. Journal of Modern Education Review, 2, 9-17.

ABSTRACT: The purpose of the study was to determine if there was a significant difference in three math programs within one school district and their impact on student performance as measured by the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS). All campuses involved in this study were designated as middle schools containing grade levels six through eight. Mathematics teachers at each of these middle school campuses teach students the mathematics objectives outlined in the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) through their school’s curriculum. Of the campuses in the study, one campus used the Texas MathWorks Program for every student in grades six and seven, two campuses used the Connected Mathematics Program in grades six through eight, and four campuses use the district approved state adopted textbook, Glencoe, in grades six through eight. The study determined if there were significant differences in test scores among these three math programs in grades six and seven for the academic school years 2008–2009 and 2009–2010. Campus scores on TAKS from the campuses involved in this study were reviewed using the Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS) provided by the Texas Education Agency for TAKS results as well data provided by the south Texas school district. From the analysis of data, it can be concluded that students enrolled in Connected Mathematics did better on the TAKS test than those in the two other instructional programs, Glencoe and Texas MathWorks.

Kulm, G., Capraro, R. M., & Capraro, M. M. (2007). Teaching and learning middle grades mathematics with understanding. Middle Grades Research Journal, 2(1), 23-48.

ABSTRACT: This study addresses the nexus of two critical challenges for today's mathematics teacher. On the one hand, teaching for understanding for all students is the goal of most mathematics teachers. However, many teachers also must acknowledge and address the requirement that students do well on high stakes tests. This study analyzed data on 6th grade students' performance and achievement after a year-long implementation of Connected Mathematics (CMP). Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (TAAS) data were analyzed, comparing students' achievement from 5th to 6th grade. The variables of at-risk, socio-economic status, and ethnicity were analyzed to determine the nature and practical importance of adopting CMP. The results indicated that the overall gain from using CMP materials over the previous year's mathematics achievement was four points (p less than 0.01). The at-risk students demonstrated a mean 10-point gain (p less than 0.01) while the non at-risk students demonstrated a mean 2-point gain.

Kulm, G., Wilson, L. D., Kitchen, R. (2005). Alignment of content and effectiveness of mathematics assessment items. Educational Assessment, 10(4), 333-356.

ABSTRACT: Alignment has taken on increased importance given the current high-stakes nature of assessment. To make well-informed decisions about student learning on the basis of test results, assessment items need to be well aligned with standards. Project 2061 of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has developed a procedure for analyzing the content and quality of assessment items. The authors of this study used this alignment procedure to closely examine 2 mathematics assessment items. Student work on these 2 items was analyzed to determine whether the conclusions reached through the use of the alignment procedure could be validated. It was found that the Project 2061 alignment procedure was effective in providing a tool for in-depth analysis of the mathematical content of the item and a set of standards and in identifying 1 particular content standard that was most closely aligned with the standard. Through analyzing student work samples and student interviews, it was also found that students' thinking may not correspond to the standard identified as best aligned with the learning goals of the item. This finding highlights the potential usefulness of analyzing student work to clarify any additional deficiencies of an assessment item not revealed by an alignment procedure.

Schneider, C. (2000). Connected Mathematics and the Texas Assessment of Academic Skills. (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from Dissertation Abstracts International, 62(2). (ProQuest Id No. 727941391)

ABSTRACT: This study determined if the use of Connected Mathematics (CMP), a middle school curriculum based on the reform standards called for by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in 1989, impacted student performance measured by the state mandated Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (TAAS) test. Did Texas campuses involved in the CMP pilot from 1997 to 1999 have different TAAS results compared to similar Texas campuses that did not use CMP?

In this study campuses were not randomly selected to use the curriculum. CMP and non-CMP campuses were matched using a regression analysis of the significant variables predicting 1996 pre-CMP TAAS rates. Campus level TARS passing rates and student Texas Learning Index (TLI) scores were analyzed using mixed model methodology. There were 48 campuses represented in the campus level analysis and 19,501 students from 32 of these campuses in the student level analysis. Based upon an implementation survey, a high use subset of campuses was identified from teachers' reporting that at least one-third of the total possible curriculum at every grade and year during the pilot was taught. The data were partitioned into cohorts; Cohort 1 represented observations from sixth, seventh, and eighth grades, from 1996-97 to 1998-99. Cohort 2 included data from sixth and seventh grades, 1997-98 to 1998-99. Cohort 3 had data for sixth grade, 1998-99.

For the analyses on TAAS percent passing and student TLI for all campuses and cohorts combined there is no difference between CMP and non-CMP campuses. When disaggregating the analyses by cohort, there is no difference between CMP and non-CMP campuses for either type of data for any individual cohort using all campuses. For the high use subset of campuses with all cohorts combined there is no difference between CMP and non-CMP campuses for either TAAS passing rates or student TLI scores. For the high use subset of campuses and students disaggregated by cohort, differences may be found, but they are not consistent. Research in this study indicates that the use of the CMP curriculum does not make a difference on TAAS passing rates or student level TLI scores.

Stancavage, F., Shepard, L., McLaughlin, D., Holtzman, D., Blankenship, C., & Zhang, Y. (2009). Sensitivity of NAEP to the effects of reform-based teaching and learning in middle school mathematics. Washington, D. C.: American Institutes for Research.

ABSTRACT: This study is a validity study of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), intended to test the adequacy of NAEP for detecting and monitoring the effects of mathematics education reform. The current study design was intended to support a comparison of the relative effectiveness of three different types of large-scale assessments--"Balanced Assessment in Mathematics" (BAM), NAEP, and state assessments--for measuring the learning gains of students participating in a well-implemented reform mathematics curriculum. To provide a context for assessing student learning where the authors could be reasonably certain of observing substantial learning gains in mathematics over the course of a school year, they selected National Science Foundation's (NSF's) Connected Mathematics Project (CMP). Although the authors had initially hypothesized that BAM, being more closely aligned with the reform curriculum, would reveal larger gains than NAEP, they found that both assessments were equally sensitive to the gains of their sample of students in CMP classrooms, and NAEP appeared better able to detect gains in the algebra classrooms. This was true even though the BAM test required twice as much time to administer as the NAEP test. Three appendices are included: (1) Sample NAEP Items; (2) Sample BAM Task; and (3) Analyses Using Booklet Percent Correct Metric.

Stancavage, V. B., Shepard, L., McLaughlin, D., Holtzman, D., Blankenship, C., & Zhang, Y . (2009). Sensitivity of NAEP to the effects of reform-based teaching and learning in middle school mathematics. A publication of the NAEP Validity Studies Panel. Palo Alto, CA: American Institutes for Research.