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Durham University

School of Education

Staff Profile

Publication details for Prof Joe Elliott

Resing, W.C.M., Touw, K.W.J., Veerbeek, J. & Elliott, J. (2017). Progress in the inductive strategy-use of children from different ethnic backgrounds: a study employing dynamic testing. Educational Psychology 37(2): 173-191.

Author(s) from Durham


This study investigated potential differences in inductive behavioural and verbal strategy-use between children (aged 6–8 years) from indigenous and non-indigenous backgrounds. This was effected by the use of an electronic device that could present a series of tasks, offer scaffolded assistance and record children’s responses. Children from non-indigenous ethnic backgrounds, starting at a lower level, profited as much from dynamic testing as did indigenous children but were unable to progress to the standard of this latter group. Irrespective of ethnic group, dynamic testing resulted in greater accuracy, fewer corrections, and reduced trial-and-error behaviour than repeated practice. Improvements in strategy-use were noted at both the group and individual level. After dynamic training, children from both ethnic groups showed a superior capacity for inductive reasoning although indigenous children subsequently used more inductive strategies. The study revealed individual differences between and within different ethnic groups and variability in the sorts of help required and subsequent strategy progression paths.