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Master's Professional Reports Abstract

Textbooks, Mathematics, and Reform: Do Standards Really Matter?

Reforms at the federal, state, and local levels are growing in their focus on standards and aligned assessments. What is critical in the growth of such a movement, as with any other, is how it is implemented. Instruction and materials used throughout the reform process are critical to the success or failure of this movement if it is to change educational processes and outcomes.

This analysis seeks to explain the projected or real effects of standards-based reform on fourth grade mathematics textbooks, with a particular focus on the state of Texas. That is, this report examines whether fourth grade mathematics textbooks have changed since the movements' inceptions, what factors have influenced this, and most importantly what caused change if it occurred. This analysis necessarily outlines the history of textbooks, the adoption processes, and the textbook industry, with particular attention to the politics and relationship involved and how "standards" might affect such relationships.

--Author's foreword.