Investigation of college students' cognitive performance in trigonometry in a problem based learning environment


Br. Andrew Gonzalez FSC College of Education


Science Education

Document Type

Archival Material/Manuscript

Publication Date



This exploratory investigation was aimed to determine the level of conceptual understanding and solution strategies of twenty selected Nautical students in Trigonometry. Using qualitative techniques, it sought to reveal the students' problem solving strategies and performance on selected topics in Trigonometry. The students' answers to the seatworks and quizzes and their responses to the teaching interview were analyzed using Novotna's problem solving strategies and the indicators in the combined Van Hiele-SOLO model. The data showed consistent use of algebraic solutions in the upper group while inconsistent choice of solution strategies was observed in the middle and lower groups. This difference is attributed to the degree of difficulty of the mathematical concepts involved in the given problem. Evidences from this study showed the importance of maximizing the use of problem solving as a strategy in the classroom and the need for Mathematics teachers to understand how their students think and to address the issue of reading comprehension when doing mathematical tasks. This study also foregrounds the need for Mathematics educators to look into models of mathematical performance such as the Van Hiele and SOLO models to assess the performance of their students.



Science and Mathematics Education


Publication/creation date supplied


Trigonometry—Study and teaching

Upload File


This document is currently not available here.