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New Evidence on Causal Relationship between Approximate Number System (ANS) Acuity and Arithmetic Ability in Elementary-School Students: A Longitudinal Cross-Lagged Analysis.

He Y, Zhou X, Shi D, Song H, Zhang H, Shi J - Front Psychol (2016)

Bottom Line: Approximate number system (ANS) acuity and mathematical ability have been found to be closely associated in recent studies.The results show that ANS acuity influences later arithmetic ability while the reverse causal direction was not supported.Our finding adds a strong evidence to the causal association between ANS acuity and mathematical ability, and also has important implications for educational intervention designed to train ANS acuity and thereby promote mathematical ability.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Key Laboratory of Behavioral Science, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences Beijing, China.

ABSTRACT
Approximate number system (ANS) acuity and mathematical ability have been found to be closely associated in recent studies. However, whether and how these two measures are causally related still remain less addressed. There are two hypotheses about the possible causal relationship: ANS acuity influences mathematical performances, or access to math education sharpens ANS acuity. Evidences in support of both hypotheses have been reported, but these two hypotheses have never been tested simultaneously. Therefore, questions still remain whether only one-direction or reciprocal causal relationships existed in the association. In this work, we provided a new evidence on the causal relationship between ANS acuity and arithmetic ability. ANS acuity and mathematical ability of elementary-school students were measured sequentially at three time points within one year, and all possible causal directions were evaluated simultaneously using cross-lagged regression analysis. The results show that ANS acuity influences later arithmetic ability while the reverse causal direction was not supported. Our finding adds a strong evidence to the causal association between ANS acuity and mathematical ability, and also has important implications for educational intervention designed to train ANS acuity and thereby promote mathematical ability.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Four-cross-lagged models used to fit the data. (A–D) Refer to Model 1, Model 2, Model 3 and Model 4, respectively.
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Figure 2: Four-cross-lagged models used to fit the data. (A–D) Refer to Model 1, Model 2, Model 3 and Model 4, respectively.

Mentions: Three-wave longitudinal panel data were collected on ANS acuity and arithmetic ability of the participants at three sequential time points. Prior to cross-lagged regression analysis, the descriptive statistics and the correlations of these two variables were first computed by SPSS 20.0. Mplus 7.0 was then used to fit the four competing cross-lagged models to the collected data, in order to test the causal relationships between ANS acuity and arithmetic achievement (Figure 2). The first model (M1) was an autoregressive model, with no cross-lagged effects but only temporal stability and contemporary associations. The second model (M2) added cross-lagged pathways from ANS acuity at T1 (and T2) to arithmetic ability at T2 (and T3), testing the hypothesis that ANS acuity has a causal effect on arithmetic achievement. The third model (M3) added the cross-lagged pathways from arithmetic ability at T1 (and T2) to ANS acuity at T2 (and T3), testing the hypothesis that arithmetic education would enhance ANS acuity. The last model (M4) represented reciprocal effects and tested causal effects in both directions. In the current study, considering that there were only three waves of data, the time-specific effects of cross-lagged paths were not explored; instead, the two cross-lagged paths from T1 to T2 and T2 to T3 of M2 were constrained to be equal, which indicates the average effects of ANS acuity on arithmetic ability across one-year period. Similar equality constrains were used in M3 and M4 as well.


New Evidence on Causal Relationship between Approximate Number System (ANS) Acuity and Arithmetic Ability in Elementary-School Students: A Longitudinal Cross-Lagged Analysis.

He Y, Zhou X, Shi D, Song H, Zhang H, Shi J - Front Psychol (2016)

Four-cross-lagged models used to fit the data. (A–D) Refer to Model 1, Model 2, Model 3 and Model 4, respectively.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4940382&req=5

Figure 2: Four-cross-lagged models used to fit the data. (A–D) Refer to Model 1, Model 2, Model 3 and Model 4, respectively.
Mentions: Three-wave longitudinal panel data were collected on ANS acuity and arithmetic ability of the participants at three sequential time points. Prior to cross-lagged regression analysis, the descriptive statistics and the correlations of these two variables were first computed by SPSS 20.0. Mplus 7.0 was then used to fit the four competing cross-lagged models to the collected data, in order to test the causal relationships between ANS acuity and arithmetic achievement (Figure 2). The first model (M1) was an autoregressive model, with no cross-lagged effects but only temporal stability and contemporary associations. The second model (M2) added cross-lagged pathways from ANS acuity at T1 (and T2) to arithmetic ability at T2 (and T3), testing the hypothesis that ANS acuity has a causal effect on arithmetic achievement. The third model (M3) added the cross-lagged pathways from arithmetic ability at T1 (and T2) to ANS acuity at T2 (and T3), testing the hypothesis that arithmetic education would enhance ANS acuity. The last model (M4) represented reciprocal effects and tested causal effects in both directions. In the current study, considering that there were only three waves of data, the time-specific effects of cross-lagged paths were not explored; instead, the two cross-lagged paths from T1 to T2 and T2 to T3 of M2 were constrained to be equal, which indicates the average effects of ANS acuity on arithmetic ability across one-year period. Similar equality constrains were used in M3 and M4 as well.

Bottom Line: Approximate number system (ANS) acuity and mathematical ability have been found to be closely associated in recent studies.The results show that ANS acuity influences later arithmetic ability while the reverse causal direction was not supported.Our finding adds a strong evidence to the causal association between ANS acuity and mathematical ability, and also has important implications for educational intervention designed to train ANS acuity and thereby promote mathematical ability.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Key Laboratory of Behavioral Science, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences Beijing, China.

ABSTRACT
Approximate number system (ANS) acuity and mathematical ability have been found to be closely associated in recent studies. However, whether and how these two measures are causally related still remain less addressed. There are two hypotheses about the possible causal relationship: ANS acuity influences mathematical performances, or access to math education sharpens ANS acuity. Evidences in support of both hypotheses have been reported, but these two hypotheses have never been tested simultaneously. Therefore, questions still remain whether only one-direction or reciprocal causal relationships existed in the association. In this work, we provided a new evidence on the causal relationship between ANS acuity and arithmetic ability. ANS acuity and mathematical ability of elementary-school students were measured sequentially at three time points within one year, and all possible causal directions were evaluated simultaneously using cross-lagged regression analysis. The results show that ANS acuity influences later arithmetic ability while the reverse causal direction was not supported. Our finding adds a strong evidence to the causal association between ANS acuity and mathematical ability, and also has important implications for educational intervention designed to train ANS acuity and thereby promote mathematical ability.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus