Anticipated Date of Graduation

Summer 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Mathematical Sciences


Mathematical Sciences

First Advisor

Douglas Darbro


The COVID-19 pandemic took hold of our world and affected nearly every aspect of our lives. It was especially impactful to adolescents, who were already experiencing major stressors and changes in their lives without the added effects of the pandemic. Instead of worrying about who they are going to go to prom with or sitting with at lunch, students may have struggled to help with childcare, how their learning will be delivered to them the following week, or the effects of little to no social interactions. Consistent stressors can lead adolescents to develop dysfunctional neurobehaviour or simply fall into the cycle of stress. Students become stressed, sleep abysmally, become fatigued, which ultimately leads to impaired learning. To complete the cycle, this impaired learning then leads to more stress for the student. (Romeo, 2013, Heller and Adam, 2019). Studies are beginning to come out detailing the levels of stress experienced by adolescence and young adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. It has been found that nearly 50% of students surveyed were experiencing a higher perceived level of stress, with 60% screening positive for anxiety or depression (Aiyer, Surani, Gill, Ratnani, and Sunesara, 2020). This study focuses on students from Rootstown High School in Portage County, Ohio. Data from these students 8th Grade Mathematics and Integrated Mathematics II Ohio State Tests (OST), along with Free and Reduced Lunch Forms and students’ learning environments were utilized to conduct this study. Firstly, this study seeks to determine if a student’s learning environment was predictive of their Integrated Mathematics II OST scores. This was accomplished with the use of a multiple regression model which controlled for both students socioeconomic status (SES) and 8th Grade Mathematics OST scores. Secondly, this study seeks to determine if there is a statistical significant relationship between SES and Integrated Mathematics II OST scores, learning environment and Integrated Mathematics II OST scores, and lastly to determine which, iii SES or learning environment, has a larger significant relationship to Integrated Mathematics II OST scores. These three questions were answered utilizing ANCOVA models. It was determined that there is a significant relationship between SES and Integrated Mathematics II OST scores, as well as, between learning environment and Integrated Mathematics II OST scores. While both were statistically significant relationships, this study found that the learning environment had a larger significant effect on Integrated Mathematics II OST scores. This study also brought light to the widening gap between non-economically disadvantaged and economically disadvantaged students at Rootstown Local Schools following the pandemic, while also illustrating the growth that a classroom teacher can experience from year one to year three of their career. Ultimately, Rootstown High School students’ Integrated Mathematics II scores were affected by the learning model they chose for the 2020-2021 school year and economically disadvantaged students performed much worse than their more affluent peers.

Included in

Mathematics Commons