Empowering and Facilitating Student Learning: An Investigation of Culturally Relevant Pedagogy for High-school Mathematics Instruction



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Implementing culturally relevant pedagogy (CRP) in a mathematics classroom is often recommended by researchers as a strategy for improving mathematical achievement among underrepresented students. This study explores the effect of CRP on the mathematical achievement of underrepresented students by: 1) conducting a meta- synthesis in order to determine the effects that have been found in prior culturally relevant mathematics studies; 2) contributing to the literature on the effect by engaging high school students in a 10-day culturally relevant mathematics intervention and measuring their mathematical achievement by a pre- and post- assessment; and 3) determining students? perspectives of culturally relevant mathematics instruction by interviewing five students that participated in the culturally relevant intervention.

The results of investigating CRP revealed that it has positive impacts for all students participating. Not only did CRP improve mathematics achievement among all students, but CRP also increased students?: 1) engagement in the learning process; 2) life-skills; 3) habits of learning; 4) general knowledge; 5) community advocacy; 6) attitudes; 7) and interests in mathematics. Also, the students in the study had positive perspectives of CRP and preferred CRP over traditional mathematics instruction. Broader impacts of the results from this study are also provided.