Patterns of interactions among mathematics educators: Perceptions of high school mathematics teachers and university mathematics faculty.
AuthorLaurenson, David James.
Committee ChairGriffin, Gary A.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe aim of this study was to describe the interactions among mathematics educators, particularly high school mathematics teachers and university mathematics educators, with a view to determining the professional development that occurs in a university setting. Two university mathematics departments were selected for this study on the basis of their proactive stance in mathematics education. Data were collected through interviews, observations, and written materials pertaining to the mathematics education programs offered. Six university mathematics faculty members and six high school teachers were studied in depth to gain insight into the history, the current endeavors, the goals, the beliefs, and the outcomes of the various programs offered at the two sites. The data were analyzed using Glaser's (1967) constant comparison method to allow explicit coding procedures to accompany the generation of theory in a systematic manner. Having students as the focus of interactions is a characteristic at both sites as is an emphasis on problem solving. Both university educators and high school teachers believe in the work they are doing and think of themselves as being on the cutting edge of developments in mathematics education. The contexts in which the interactions operate display conditions of support, trust, respect, openness, commitment, and vision. The educators are involved in processes of mutual sharing in environments conducive to thinking about change. It can be concluded that interactions among mathematics educators in a university setting can be beneficial. The development of relations and interactive processes take time to establish and require the dedication of individuals who truly believe that mathematics education can be improved. Future studies could focus on the development of a framework for mathematics teachers' beliefs and on the ramifications of linkage structures that exist in collaborative ventures between schools and universities.
Degree ProgramTeaching and Teacher Education