Mathematics, testing, computers, curriculum.


This study measures the effectiveness of the National Computer Systems (NCS) Learn SuccessMaker Math Concepts and Skills computer program on standardized test scores at a middle school in east central Florida. The NCS Learn Company makes three claims for the SuccessMaker interactive computer program, Math Concepts and Skills (MCS): 1. Student Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) scores will improve from using the software 30 hours or more; 2. The increase in FCAT scores is directly related to the length of time the students' spend using the program; 3. The software package grading system is equivalent to the FCAT scoring. This study was designed to evaluate each claim. To test the first claim, the FCAT Norm Referenced Test (NRT) Mathematics scale scores of the 6th-grade middle school students were compared to the same students' previous FCAT scores. The scores were compared before and after they used the Math Concepts and Skills program. An independent t test was used to compare the scores. There was a statistically significant difference in scale scores when the students used the MCS program for 30 hours or more. Further investigation is needed to establish the causal effect for the observed differences. To test the second claim, the 6th- and 8th-grade students' time on task in the laboratory was compared to their change in FCAT scores. A Pearson correlation coefficient of 0.58 was found to exist for the complete 6th-grade data set and a 0.71 correlation for the 8th-grade group. To test the third claim, the MCS computer program grade equivalent scores were compared to the mathematics FCAT Level using the dependent t test to see if the two scores were equal. The analysis revealed that the difference in the two scores was statistically significant. Therefore the claim that the two scores are equivalent was not true for this data set. Recommendations were made for future studies to include qualitative data, a control group, and larger sample sizes. Studying the effect of the Math Concepts and Skills program on FCAT scores continues to be a project for investigation as implementation of the computer software is contingent on improving FCAT scores.


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Graduation Date





Sivo, Stephen


Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


College of Education


Educational Research, Technology and Leadership

Degree Program

Curriculum and Instruction








Release Date

December 2004

Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)