TY - JOUR

T1 - Longitudinal associations between reading and mathematics achievement

AU - Grimm, Kevin J.

N1 - Funding Information:
I thank the Chicago Public Schools for graciously providing the data for this project as well as Jack McArdle, John Nesselroade, Bob Pianta, Fumiaki Hamagami, and Tracy Nishida for their helpful comments on this work. The research was supported, in part, by the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, through Grant R305B040049 to the University of Virginia when the author was at the University of Virginia. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not represent views of the U.S. Department of Education.

PY - 2008/5

Y1 - 2008/5

N2 - The association between early reading skills and changes in mathematics was examined in a large, low-income sample to determine whether students who have a greater level of reading skills in early elementary school exhibit more rapid gains in tests of mathematics. The longitudinal associations between third grade reading comprehension and changes in three components of mathematics achievement (Problem Solving and Data Interpretation, Mathematical Concepts and Estimation, Mathematical Computation) from third through eighth grade were examined. Latent growth models were fit to the repeated assessments of each mathematics component and the students' third grade reading and global mathematics scores were included as predictors of the intercept and slope. Gender, poverty status, and ethnicity were included in the models as control variables. The results showed males and African-American students tended to have shallower rates of change than females and non-African-American/non-Hispanic students. In terms of the effect of reading on changes in mathematics, third grade reading comprehension was found to be a positive significant predictor of change for each component of mathematics, suggesting students with a greater level of reading achievement in early elementary school change more rapidly in mathematics skills controlling for prior mathematics skills and student characteristics. The largest effects were shown for the Problem Solving and Data Interpretation test, a test focused on the applications of mathematics knowledge, and the Mathematical Concepts and Estimation test. Negligible effects were found for changes in Mathematical Computation. Thus, early reading comprehension was shown to be related to a conceptual understanding of mathematics and the application of mathematics knowledge. These findings lend support for the notion that early reading skills are important for success in mathematics.

AB - The association between early reading skills and changes in mathematics was examined in a large, low-income sample to determine whether students who have a greater level of reading skills in early elementary school exhibit more rapid gains in tests of mathematics. The longitudinal associations between third grade reading comprehension and changes in three components of mathematics achievement (Problem Solving and Data Interpretation, Mathematical Concepts and Estimation, Mathematical Computation) from third through eighth grade were examined. Latent growth models were fit to the repeated assessments of each mathematics component and the students' third grade reading and global mathematics scores were included as predictors of the intercept and slope. Gender, poverty status, and ethnicity were included in the models as control variables. The results showed males and African-American students tended to have shallower rates of change than females and non-African-American/non-Hispanic students. In terms of the effect of reading on changes in mathematics, third grade reading comprehension was found to be a positive significant predictor of change for each component of mathematics, suggesting students with a greater level of reading achievement in early elementary school change more rapidly in mathematics skills controlling for prior mathematics skills and student characteristics. The largest effects were shown for the Problem Solving and Data Interpretation test, a test focused on the applications of mathematics knowledge, and the Mathematical Concepts and Estimation test. Negligible effects were found for changes in Mathematical Computation. Thus, early reading comprehension was shown to be related to a conceptual understanding of mathematics and the application of mathematics knowledge. These findings lend support for the notion that early reading skills are important for success in mathematics.

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U2 - 10.1080/87565640801982486

DO - 10.1080/87565640801982486

M3 - Article

C2 - 18473206

AN - SCOPUS:45149101637

SN - 8756-5641

VL - 33

SP - 410

EP - 426

JO - Developmental Neuropsychology

JF - Developmental Neuropsychology

IS - 3

ER -