### Abstract

system, then children's understanding of number could be facilitated by improving mapping between systems. In the present study, seven- to nine-year old and adult participants were assessed for non-symbolic acuity, formal mathematics ability and IQ. In children, there was a positive relationship between formal mathematics ability and nonsymbolic comparison accuracy when controlling for IQ. In adults, however, this relationship was not present. This pattern of findings suggests a developmental shift in the relationship

between formal mathematics ability and non-symbolic acuity. In particular it seems that if 'number sense' is the cognitive basis of mathematical ability, it fulfils only a bootstrapping role.

Language | English |
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Status | Published - 2010 |

Event | Day Conference of the British Society for Research into the Learning of Mathematics - , UK United Kingdom Duration: 19 Jun 2010 → 19 Jun 2010 |

### Conference

Conference | Day Conference of the British Society for Research into the Learning of Mathematics |
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Country | UK United Kingdom |

Period | 19/06/10 → 19/06/10 |

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### Cite this

*The relationship between number sense and mathematics achievement in children and adults*. Paper presented at Day Conference of the British Society for Research into the Learning of Mathematics, UK United Kingdom.

**The relationship between number sense and mathematics achievement in children and adults.** / Attridge, N F; Gilmore, Camilla; Inglis, Matthew; Batchelor, Sophie.

Research output: Contribution to conference › Paper

}

TY - CONF

T1 - The relationship between number sense and mathematics achievement in children and adults

AU - Attridge,N F

AU - Gilmore,Camilla

AU - Inglis,Matthew

AU - Batchelor,Sophie

PY - 2010

Y1 - 2010

N2 - There is growing evidence that humans have an inbuilt 'number sense' system that supports approximate numerical operations. Findings suggest that when we learn to deal with symbolic numerals, they may be mapped onto the pre-existing non-symbolic system. Theorists have speculated that this non-symbolic system might be the cognitive basis of all higher mathematics. However, the relationship between 'number sense' and formal mathematics ability remains somewhat unclear. If symbolic arithmetic is aided by the use of a nonsymbolicsystem, then children's understanding of number could be facilitated by improving mapping between systems. In the present study, seven- to nine-year old and adult participants were assessed for non-symbolic acuity, formal mathematics ability and IQ. In children, there was a positive relationship between formal mathematics ability and nonsymbolic comparison accuracy when controlling for IQ. In adults, however, this relationship was not present. This pattern of findings suggests a developmental shift in the relationshipbetween formal mathematics ability and non-symbolic acuity. In particular it seems that if 'number sense' is the cognitive basis of mathematical ability, it fulfils only a bootstrapping role.

AB - There is growing evidence that humans have an inbuilt 'number sense' system that supports approximate numerical operations. Findings suggest that when we learn to deal with symbolic numerals, they may be mapped onto the pre-existing non-symbolic system. Theorists have speculated that this non-symbolic system might be the cognitive basis of all higher mathematics. However, the relationship between 'number sense' and formal mathematics ability remains somewhat unclear. If symbolic arithmetic is aided by the use of a nonsymbolicsystem, then children's understanding of number could be facilitated by improving mapping between systems. In the present study, seven- to nine-year old and adult participants were assessed for non-symbolic acuity, formal mathematics ability and IQ. In children, there was a positive relationship between formal mathematics ability and nonsymbolic comparison accuracy when controlling for IQ. In adults, however, this relationship was not present. This pattern of findings suggests a developmental shift in the relationshipbetween formal mathematics ability and non-symbolic acuity. In particular it seems that if 'number sense' is the cognitive basis of mathematical ability, it fulfils only a bootstrapping role.

UR - http://www.bsrlm.org.uk

M3 - Paper

ER -