Patmaniar Patmaniar, Siti Maghfirotun Amin, Raden Sulaiman


Students’ previous knowledge at a superficial level is reviewed when they solve mathematical problems. This action is imperative to strengthen their knowledge and provide the right information needed to solve the problems. Furthermore, Pirie and Kieren's theory stated that the act of returning to a previous level of understanding is called folding back. Therefore, this descriptive-explorative study examines high school students' levels of knowledge in solving mathematics problems using the folding back method. The sample consists of 33 students classified into male and female groups, each interviewed to determine the results of solving arithmetic problems based on gender. The results showed differences in the level of students' understanding in solving problems. Male students carried out the folding back process at the level of image having, formalizing, and structuring. Their female counterparts conducted it at image-making, property noticing, formalizing, and observing. Subsequently, both participants were able to carry out understanding activities, including explaining information from a mathematical problem, defining the concept, having an overview of a particular topic, identifying similarities and differences, abstracting mathematical concepts, and understanding its ideas in accordance with a given problem. This study suggested that Pirie and Kieren's theory can help teachers detect the features of students’ understanding in solving mathematical problems.


Characteristics; Folding Back; Gender; Mathematical Problems; Understanding

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Journal on Mathematics Education
Doctoral Program on Mathematics Education
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