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Do the Math: Cognitive Demand Makes a Difference


"Extending high expectations to all students in mathematics is a relatively new idea. Even the 1960s movement to improve U.S. mathematics education, which was based on the argument that an excellent scientific education was necessary for a strong economy and national defense,1 largely was limited to "college-capable" students.

Today, mathematics education faces two major challenges: raising the floor by expanding achievement for all, and lifting the ceiling of achievement to better prepare future leaders in mathematics, as well as in science, engineering, and technology. Although these goals are not mutually exclusive, this Research Points tackles the challenge of ensuring that whole groups of students are not excluded from higher mathematics learning."