Evidence of Success
What do evaluation studies say about the effectiveness of the Core-Plus
Mathematics Project curriculum?
There is a large and growing body of rigorous research documenting
the effectiveness of the CPMP curriculum. Based on evidence from nationally
standardized tests (ITED, SAT, ACT, NAEP), course-specific tests, researcher-developed
tests, interviews, and surveys, the CPMP curriculum has been shown to
enhance students' mathematical achievement and attitudes toward mathematics.
CPMP students outperform comparison students on the mathematics subtest
of the nationally standardized Iowa Tests of Educational Development
CPMP students demonstrate better conceptual understanding than students
in more traditional curricula.
Problem Solving Ability
CPMP students demonstrate better problem solving ability than comparison
Applications and Mathematical Modeling
CPMP students are better able to apply mathematics than students in more
CPMP students perform better on tasks of algebraic reasoning than comparison
Algebraic Procedural Skills
This is the one area for which field-test research indicates mixed results.
On some evaluation tests, CPMP students do as well or better, on others
they do less well than comparison students. As part of the curriculum
development process, revisions have been made to strengthen students'
algebraic skills. The final and published version of the Core-Plus
Mathematics curriculum maintains the well-documented effectiveness
of the curriculum, while strengthening students' algebraic procedural
Important Mathematics in Addition to Algebra and Geometry
CPMP students perform well on mathematical tasks involving probability,
statistics, and discrete mathematics.
National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)
CPMP students scored well above national norms on a test comprised of
released items from the National Assessment of Educational Progress.
Perceptions and Attitudes
CPMP students have better attitudes and perceptions about mathematics
than students in more traditional curricula.
on State Assessments
The pass rate on the 2004-05 Tenth-Grade Washington Assessment of Student
Learning Mathematics test for 22 state of Washington high schools
that were in at least their second year using the Core-Plus Mathematics curriculum
was significantly higher than that of a sample of 22 schools carefully
matched on prior mathematics achievement, percent of students from low-income
families, percent of underrepresented minorities, and student enrollment.
College Entrance Exams - SAT and ACT
CPMP students do as well as, or better than, comparable students in more
traditional curricula on the SAT and ACT college entrance exams.
on College Math Placement Tests
On a mathematics department placement test used at a major midwestern
university, CPMP students performed as well as students in traditional
precalculus courses on basic algebra and advanced algebra subtests, and
they performed better on the calculus readiness subtest.
in College Mathematics Courses
CPMP students completing the four-year curriculum perform as well as,
or better than, comparable students in a more traditional curriculum
in college mathematics courses at the calculus level and above.
The above results are drawn from several sources, including two research
papers presented at the 1998 Annual Meeting of the American Educational
two field-test progress reports:
and a paper appearing in the Journal for Research in Mathematics
Education, "Effects of Standards-based Mathematics Education: A
Study of the Core-Plus Mathematics Project Algebra/Functions Strand," Vol.
31, No. 3 (2000).
For additional information on the CPMP field-test evaluations, research
studies, and school reports, see the CPMP main site under Evaluation.
Evaluation and Research Findings 1992–2012 (3.96 MB).