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Can teaching assistants improve attainment and attitudes of low performing pupils in numeracy? Evidence from a large-scale randomised controlled trial

Hodgen, Jeremy; Adkins, Michael; Ainsworth, Shaaron Elizabeth

Can teaching assistants improve attainment and attitudes of low performing pupils in numeracy? Evidence from a large-scale randomised controlled trial Thumbnail


Authors

Jeremy Hodgen



Abstract

The use of teaching assistants (TAs) is widespread in many education systems, but the ways that TAs can support learning effectively are poorly understood. Much evidence indicates that most TA support has no, or negative, effects on pupil attainment. A small but growing body of evidence shows that structured TA intervention programmes can be effective. This paper reports the results of a large-scale randomised controlled trial of Catch Up® Numeracy, an intervention delivered one-to-one by TAs, compared to a control in which TAs provided matched-time numeracy support. The trial involved 1794 low-attaining pupils (aged 7–10) and 300 TAs from 150 English primary schools. Pupils in the intervention group showed no gains in attainment compared to the matched-time control, but there was some evidence to suggest a positive impact in pupils’ attitudes. The implications for future TA interventions to address low attainment in numeracy are discussed.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 21, 2022
Online Publication Date Oct 20, 2022
Publication Date 2023
Deposit Date Jun 23, 2022
Publicly Available Date Apr 21, 2024
Journal Cambridge Journal of Education
Print ISSN 0305-764X
Electronic ISSN 1469-3577
Publisher Informa UK Limited
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 53
Issue 2
Pages 215-235
DOI https://doi.org/10.1080/0305764X.2022.2093838
Keywords Education
Public URL https://nottingham-repository.worktribe.com/output/8634001
Publisher URL https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/0305764X.2022.2093838

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