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Gyöngyvér Molnár: The problem solving skills of low SES students

One component of a comprehensive research endeavour, the presented assessment aimed at a detailed diagnosis of the developmental level of the problem solving and knowledge application of disadvantaged students, in the context of several background variables. Data collection took place in spring 2004, with the participation of approximately 1000 students in each grade between grades 3–8 (N=6336). Compared to an earlier, 2002 assessment of urban Hungarian students, the performances of the students in the present sample are significantly lower (on the average, 10–15% lower) for all grades and for both the explicit and the problem-solving tasks. Remarkable selection processes at work following elementary education are obvious. The degree of selectivity is higher than the difference between the average ability levels of urban and disadvantaged students at the end of grade 8. The results give an insight into the specific problems of the knowledge and abilities of disadvantaged students in different areas and open up the possibility to assess their problem-solving thinking as a comprehensive competence beyond their subject-related achievements.

MAGYAR PEDAGÓGIA 104. Number 3. 319-337. (2004)

Address for correspondence: Molnár Gyöngyvér, Szegedi Tudományegyetem, Pedagógiai Tanszék, H–6722 Szeged, Pető-fi S. sgt. 30–34.

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Magyar Tudományos Akadémia