Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Education


Faculty of Education

First Advisor

Dr Tony Herrington


The aim of this study was to determine Year 7 students' understanding of the relationship between area and perimeter. This is an important part of the measurement strand of mathematics. Two methods of collecting data were used: a multiple-choice pencil-and-paper test item; and clinical interviews with a class of Year 7 students. Two Perth metropolitan government primary schools allowed access for the research to take place: one was used for the trial of the test item with eleven students; the students at the other school were given the validated test item followed, one week later, by clinical interviews. Analysis of the data suggested that students of this year level have a sound understanding of the concept of perimeter, but that their understanding of the area concept was not as well developed. There also did not appear to be a widespread understanding of the relationship between area and perimeter. Several categories of understandings and misunderstandings were identified, as were other areas of concern. The research highlights some interesting implications for teachers. A better understanding of their students' beliefs about the concepts of area, perimeter, and the relationship between the two, may influence teachers' decisions when planning for the teaching of these attributes of measurement