Title: Use of indirect addition in adults' mental subtraction in the number domain up to 1,000
Authors: Torbeyns, Joke ×
De Smedt, Bert
Peters, Greet
Ghesquière, Pol
Verschaffel, Lieven #
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Series Title: British Journal of Psychology vol:102 issue:3 pages:585-597
Abstract: This study examined adults' use of indirect addition and direct subtraction strategies on multi-digit subtractions in the number domain up to 1,000. Seventy students who differed in their level of arithmetic ability solved multi-digit subtractions in one choice and two no-choice conditions. Against the background of recent findings in elementary subtraction, we manipulated the size of the subtrahend compared to the difference and only selected items with large distances between these two integers. Results revealed that adults frequently and efficiently apply indirect addition on multi-digit subtractions, yet adults with higher arithmetic ability performed more efficiently than those with lower arithmetic ability. In both groups, indirect addition was more efficient than direct subtraction both on subtractions with a subtrahend much larger than the difference (e.g., 713 695) and on subtractions with a subtrahend much smaller than the difference (e.g., 613 67). Unexpectedly, only adults with lower arithmetic ability fitted their strategy choices to their individual strategy performance skills. Results are interpreted in terms of mathematical and cognitive perspectives on strategy efficiency and adaptiveness.
ISSN: 0007-1269
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Parenting and Special Education
Instructional Psychology and Technology
Education and Training
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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