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Through the lenses of statistical investigations and cognitive demands, we examined bivariate data tasks offered in US high school mathematics textbook series—a popular representative of three curriculum types: traditional, integrated, and hybrid. We developed a framework grounded in literature of association topics for the inclusion and exclusion of tasks. Using the Guidelines for Assessment and Instruction of Statistics Education (GAISE) framework, textbook tasks were coded for four investigation components (formulate questions, collect data, analyze data, and interpret results) and levels of statistical sophistication, as well as levels of cognitive demand as suggested by the Mathematical Complexity framework. Across the three series 582 statistical association tasks, all components of statistical investigation were evident with different levels of treatment: (a) all questions for statistical investigations were provided by textbook authors; (b) tasks rarely afforded student opportunities to collect data; and (c) nearly all of the tasks required students to analyze data and most required them to interpret results. Tasks in the integrated series were more numerous (n = 246) and required higher levels of mathematical complexity and statistical sophistication than tasks in the traditional and hybrid series. The vast majority of tasks were coded at the GAISE Level B for analyze data and interpret results and moderate level for mathematical complexity. Further analyses show the concordance between the developmental levels for statistical sophistication and mathematical complexity. Suggestions for curriculum development, content analysis, and future research are provided.


School of Education

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Journal Article

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