This study investigated the role of each strategy in explaining sixth graders’ (12-13 years old students’) non-routine problem solving success and discriminating between successful and unsuccessful students. Twelve non-routine problems were given to 123 pupils. Answers were scored between 0 and 10. Bottom and top segments of 27% were then determined based on total scores. All scripts of pupils in these segments were then re-scored with regard to strategy use. Multiple regression analysis showed that strategies explain 65% of the problem solving success. Order of importance of strategies are as follows: make a drawing, look for a pattern, guess and check, make a systematic list, simplify the problem, and work backward. According to discriminant analysis results, strategies which play a significant role in distinguishing top and bottom students are look for a pattern, make a drawing, simplify the problem, guess and check and work backward, respectively.
Key words: Sixth graders, mathematics education, non-routine problems, non-routine problem solving, problem solving strategies.
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