A summative evaluation of the MathLinks program, conducted in 2003, was designed to explore four areas:
- Adequacy of program materials and staff development
- Extent of teachers’ implementation
- Extent of family and student involvement
- Staff perceptions of changes in the depth of students' discussions of mathematics as a result of the program
In all, the MathLinks program appears to have great promise and enjoys the support of most teachers. Teachers are enthusiastic about the program, and they report that it has worked well in their classrooms to engage students and demonstrate mathematics concepts relevant to their curricular lessons. Given the positive responses teachers provided regarding the staff development experience, the quality of the MathLinks materials, and the student experiences in class, it seems reasonable to expect a positive impact on students over time.
- There were 77 teachers, representing at least 23 schools in four different districts, who had participated in one-day teacher development workshops. The study used workshop evaluations, follow-up surveys, and phone interviews.
- Because teachers were engaged by participating in the activities, they report leaving the workshops feeling prepared to implement the MathLinks program.
- Those teachers who used the program provided very positive feedback regarding the MathLinks materials.
- A major strength of the program is that the concepts covered in the MathLinks activities fit well with the mathematics curricula teachers use in their classroom lessons.
- The major challenge teachers report was finding the time to use MathLinks, particularly the "Back-at-School" discussion.