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Untangling the Contribution of the Subcomponents of Working Memory to Mathematical Proficiency as Measured by the National Tests: A Study among Swedish Third Graders
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Umeå Centre for Functional Brain Imaging (UFBI).
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Faculty of Education and Welfare Studies, Åbo Akademi University, Vaasa, Finland.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of applied educational science.
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2016 (English)In: Frontiers in Psychology, ISSN 1664-1078, E-ISSN 1664-1078, Vol. 7, 1062Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim with the present study was to examine the relationship between the subcomponents in working memory (WM) and mathematical performance, as measured by the National tests in a sample of 597 Swedish third-grade pupils. In line with compelling evidence of other studies, individual differences in WM capacity significantly predicted mathematical performance. Dividing the sample into four groups, based on their mathematical performance, revealed that mathematical ability can be conceptualized in terms of different WM profiles. Pupils categorized as High-math performers particularly differed from the other three groups in having a significant higher phonological ability. In contrast, pupils categorized as Low-math performers were particularly characterized by having a significant lower visuo-spatial ability. Findings suggest that it is important for educators to recognize and acknowledge individual differences in WM to support mathematical achievement at an individual level.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 7, 1062
Keyword [en]
National tests, mathematics, working memory, pupils, education, cognitive profiles
National Category
Psychology Pedagogy
Research subject
Psychology; Education
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-124358DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.01062ISI: 000379746100001OAI: diva2:951042
Swedish Research Council, 721-2011-2331
Available from: 2016-08-05 Created: 2016-08-05 Last updated: 2016-09-15Bibliographically approved

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Wiklund-Hörnqvist, CarolaJonsson, BertEklöf, HannaNyroos, Mikaela
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Department of PsychologyUmeå Centre for Functional Brain Imaging (UFBI)Department of applied educational scienceDepartment of Education
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Frontiers in Psychology

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