The Role of Concept Images in Solving Geometric Word Problems

Elif Karatağ, Hilal Gülkılık, Hasan Hüseyin Uğurlu


The purpose of this study was to investigate how eighth-grade students were affected by their concept images of mathematical concepts in solving geometric word problems. Five eighth-grade students from a public middle school participated in the study in the second semester of the 2016-2017 academic year. The data were obtained through semi-structured preliminary interviews to identify the students’ concept images of basic geometry concepts and task-based interviews in which thirteen word problems involving these concepts were presented. The data were analyzed using descriptive analysis techniques. The findings were classified within three themes as the role of concept images in understanding, modeling, and mathematical analysis stages of word problem solving. Concept images affected the students in constructing a situation model for the problem, transforming the situation model into a mathematical model, and performing mathematical operations to obtain a correct solution.


Problem solving, geometric word problems, concept image, concept definition

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