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Title: The effects of language and home factors on Lebanese students’ mathematics performance in TIMSS
Authors: Younes, Rayya
Salloum, Sara 
Antoun, Maya 
Affiliations: Department of Education 
Department of Education 
Keywords: Cultural capital
International assessments
Language and Mathematics
Language of instruction
Issue Date: 2023-08-02
Publisher: Springer
Part of: Large-Scale Assessments in Education
Volume: 11
Issue: 1
Understanding the long-standing educational inequities associated with socioeconomic status remains significant for transforming educational policies and practices. To better understand entanglements among socioeconomic status and students’ performance in mathematics, we examined different home factors (including language of the test) that influence Lebanese learners’ performance in TIMSS. Exploring TIMSS data can assist us in identifying areas and groups of students who require additional assistance in order to address inequities. The purpose of this study is to investigate how language and other home factors influence Lebanese students’ mathematics performance in TIMSS. Mathematics is taught in a foreign language (English or French) in Lebanon, according to Language of Learning and Teaching policy (LoLT) that dates to 1926. Using TIMSS data and hierarchical linear modeling (HLM), we looked at how students performed in mathematics based on the language of the test and how often they spoke it at home. Other home factors such as parents’ education level, number of books owned, and parents’ involvement were also examined. Results show that not speaking the language of the test at home and other SES-related factors had different but mostly significant contribution to students’ mathematics scores. Lebanese students’ overall low performance suggests the time is ripe for a reformed Lebanese curricula that responds to the needs of learners and of society, taking into consideration students’ cultural capital and language of instruction.
DOI: 10.1186/s40536-023-00180-w
Open URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Department of Education

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