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Data from: Classification of mathematics ability and use of online tools

Cite this dataset

Downie, Calum (2022). Data from: Classification of mathematics ability and use of online tools [Dataset]. Dryad.


Enrolment in secondary school science and mathematics subjects has been declining for some time. This decrease is particularly evident in the final years of secondary education and occurs in parallel with the delivery of advanced mathematics. This decreasing trend in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) enrolment at the secondary level are by no means restricted to Australia, with reports from the UK and Europe, the Middle East and Asia all echoing the same decline. Alongside this decline in mathematics enrolment comes an increased interest in, and reliance upon, online resources to bolster learning. The educational challenge arising from such an environment, while notable in the high school context, has profound follow-on effects within the higher education sector.

The data in this submission is twofold and addresses both the decay in learning, and the increase in tool reliance. For the former we developed a tool to classify mathematics capacity in order to provide the educator with an easily deployed and robust manner. For the second, we analysed responses as to whether students (a) made use of online tools at all, and (b) did they use tools provided by us or another offering. Further to this, we analysed responses relating to student perception of the value of online tools.

Building on previous works around self-efficacy, and including level of previous learning, we found three distinct groups (low, medium and high) which reflected pre-delivery testing scores which might allow an educator to design interventions targeting a students mathematical capacity. We also found no difference in perceived value of the use of online tools where students used either supplied or other programs.


Quiz scores extracted from LMS, remaining data extracted from surveys within LMS, IQ range calculation.