Diagnostic and Remedial Teaching - Syllabus and Study Material
The achievement tests are major means to measure the level of achievement or learning of the pupils, Through these tests the weaknesses of pupil in the subject are revealed to some extent but there is lack of vividity. The difficulties of students can these tests. So, diagnostic devices are to be used for this purpose. The aim of diagnosis is to analyses the difficulties and weakness of a student in a particular phase of work. Through diagnostic devices, efforts are made of get reliable informations and reasons concerning the weakness of the student in order to overcome them by concentrated action and for detecting needs for remedial teaching.
The functions of a teacher closely resemble with the functions of a medical practitioner. The functions of a medical practitioner are diagnosis, prescription and evaluation. The teacher has also to perform these functions. He has to diagnose the weakness of students and the factors responsible for it. On the basis of diagnosis he provides prescription or remedial teaching and then evaluates the student’s performance to know the effect of his prescription. If desired success in not achieved, the process is repeated again and again. But, there is a difference between the tools used by a medical practitioner and a teacher. There is lack o reliability, exactness, objectivity and precision in the tools used by a teacher in relation to the tools used by a medical practitioner. In the field of education, there is a dearth of precise and exact diagnostic tools. The weaknesses of students are revealed through general survey tests. Survey tests are commonly used by teachers to know the amount of student’s achievement and to indicate whether student’s achievement and to indicate whether student has sufficient basic preparations to proceed with advanced work of similar nature. It may cover the instructional material for one term of two or three months or for an entire year.
The diagnostic devices which are generally used are inventories, personal interviews and diagnostic tests to discovery and analysee pupil difficulties with a view to setting up specific remedial measures to correct errors and remove difficulties.
Importance of Diagnosis in Mathematics Teaching
Exact diagnosis of weaknesses and difficulties of student and providing proper prescription or remedy for their removal are the integral part of effective teaching. In mathematics teaching, the process of diagnosis and instruction proceed simultaneously. Diagnosis helps in detecting the weakness of student and makes efforts to know the reasons behind them. On knowing the reasons, their occurrence can be removed by proper remedial teaching. For the construction of effective diagnostic tool in mathematics it is essential to have the knowledge of basic skills required for success in its different fields. The remedial programme can be effective if teacher is able in reasoning the point which has been missed by the student to comprehend. The effectiveness of remedial and corrective teaching depends upon the correctness and extent of the skills essential for the success in mathematics as identified by diagnosis.
The preventive function of diagnosis is also very important. If once it is detected that the weaknesses in learning are related in some way with any general or specific ability of student, the teacher may use preventive measure for it in future. Therefore, diagnosis has an important place in teaching of mathematics.
Steps for Construction of Diagnostic Test: In the construction diagnostic tests following steps are to be followed:
- Fixing of objectives and outline of topics.
- Content analysis- in logical order, (i) Order of topics (ii) Order of learning steps.
- Fixing of order of difficulty of the content.
- Decision about types of items.
- Modification in the items of the content.
- Analysis of logical order of the content.
- Preparation of final draft of the test.
Diagnostic Test in Mathematics: For the construction of diagnostic test mathematics, the basic essentials are:
- Clarity of specific aims of mathematics.
- Analysis of fundamental skills essential for the achievement in mathematics.
- Preparation of subject matter to make efficient in these fundamental skills.
Few diagnostic tests have been developed for the diagnosis of errors done by students in arithmetical computations. These tests could be developed due to clarity of objectives of arithmetic. For success in arithmetic, it is essential to be efficient in the operation of its four fundamental skills addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
Remedial Teaching in Mathematics
Remedial measures should be adopted to remove the weakness and difficulties experienced by the student in a specific field of mathematics. We can detect the weaknesses of student through diagnosis. So, the diagnostic test is only a means of finding out the weaknesses of student and the reasons behind them. It is not an end. The ultimate aim of diagnosis is to remove the weaknesses and difficulties of students. If some emotional or physical factors are responsible for the weaknesses, then efforts should be made to eliminate these factors with the help of concerned peoples. After eliminating the factors, remedial teaching should be done. The mathematics teacher may also prepare corrective material for this purpose. Thus, by remedial teaching the success can be achieved in removing the weaknesses of the student.