Is School Racial/Ethnic Composition Associated With Content Coverage in Algebra?

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Educational Researcher
June 1, 2020

Karisma MortonThe University of North Texas
Catherine Riegle-CrumbThe University of Texas at Austin

This brief utilizes data from the U.S. Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study of 2011 (TIMSS) to investigate the extent to which teacher reports of content coverage in eighth grade algebra classes vary according to school racial/ethnic composition. The analytic sample is comprised of eighth grade algebra classrooms in 111 schools across the country, with 9 schools that are predominantly Black, 20 schools that are predominantly Latinx, and 82 schools that are not predominantly minority. Results of regression analyses reveal that, net of school, teacher, and student characteristics, the time that teachers report spending on algebra and more advanced content in eighth grade algebra classes is significantly lower in schools that are predominantly Black compared to those that are not predominantly minority. Implications for future research are discussed.

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Preferred citation: Morton, K., & Riegle-Crumb, C. (2020). Is school racial/ethnic composition associated with content coverage in algebra? Educational Researcher, 49(6), 441–447.