Developmental trends in peer acceptance among struggling mathematics learners

Chelsea Ziesig Deng, Fordham University


This study examined the peer acceptance of struggling math learners in the areas of work and play. The extant data utilized in this study were collected as part of a retrospective 3-year longitudinal study in which the developmental course and cognitive predictors of various mathematical abilities from second through fourth grades were investigated. Participants in the current investigation included a predominantly Black and Hispanic sample of 51 male and 43 female students from two Title I schools in an urban setting. Annual achievement and peer sociometric data for all participants were available for second through fourth grades. Participants were placed into one of three different groups, depending on their performance on specific subtests of the Stanford Diagnostic Mathematics Test–Fourth Edition. On the basis of established criteria, 30 participants were identified as typically developing (31.9%), 46 participants were identified as having persistent math difficulty (MD-p; 48.9%), and 18 participants were identified as having transient math difficulty (MD-t; 19.1%). Results indicate that peer acceptance of students identified as MD-p and MD-t can vary across context at different points in time. This instability of peer acceptance that was found among participants with MD-p and MD-t provides support for the assertion that these groups are different, both academically and socially, from their typically developing peers. Limitations and implications are discussed. ^

Subject Area

Mathematics education|Educational sociology|Educational psychology

Recommended Citation

Ziesig Deng, Chelsea, "Developmental trends in peer acceptance among struggling mathematics learners" (2016). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI10112495.