Mathematics bridging education using an online, adaptive e-tutorial

Tempelaar, Dirk T.; Rienties, Bart; Kaper, Wolter; Giesbers, Bas; Schim van der Loeff, Sybrand; van Gastel, Leendert; van de Vrie, Evert; van der Kooij, Henk and Cuypers, Hans (2011). Mathematics bridging education using an online, adaptive e-tutorial. In: Juan, Angel A.; Huertas, Maria A.; Trenholm, Sven and Steegmann, Cristina eds. Teaching Mathematics Online: Emergent Technologies and Methodologies. Hershey, PA: IGI, pp. 167–186.




This contribution describes and evaluates a postsecondary remediation program in mathematics, aiming to ease the transition from high school to university and to improve the success rates in the first year of bachelor studies. The remediation program consists of the administration of an entry test and the organisation of voluntary bridging education in the format of an online summer course, using the adaptive e-tutorial ALEKS. Participants are prospective students of the university programs business and economics of Maastricht University, and are mostly students with an international background. Effect analysis suggests a strong treatment effect of successful participation in the summer course. However, given the quasi-experimental setup of this study, with non-equivalent groups, selection effects may be responsible for part of that effect. Correction of the treatment effect by applying the propensity score method indicates that indeed a selection effect is present, but that a substantial treatment effect remains, of about 50% the size of the effect of being educated in advanced math versus basic math, in high school.

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