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Designing, Conducting, and Publishing Quality Research in Mathematics Education

Designing, Conducting, and Publishing Quality Research in Mathematics Education

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Keith Leatham is the editor of Designing, Conducting, and Publishing Quality Research in Mathematics Education. Who would you say is the target audience for your book? The target audience for the book is novice mathematics education researchers--graduate students and new faculty members. What is the big problem you hoped to address with this book? Many novice researchers wish there were more resources to help induct them into the nuts and bolts of designing, conducting, and publishing quality research. This book was written to fill that void for novice mathematics education researchers. Each author considered the following prompt with regard to their chapter: "Imagine you were meeting with a mathematics education graduate student or assistant professor and they were struggling with an issue related to designing, conducting, or publishing quality research…
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Sharon Christensen Presentation

Sharon Christensen Presentation

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In February, Professor Sharon Christensen gave a presentation at the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators national conference in Phoenix, AZ. The title of her presentation was Rethinking the Student Teaching Experience: Engaging in a Dialogue about Paired-Placement Student Teaching. Below are the responses to a few questions that we asked Professor Christensen about her presentation. Who were your collaborators for this presentation? Kelly Edenfield, University of Georgia Who would you say is the target audience for your presentation? Mathematics educators who work with student teachers in mathematics teacher educator programs What is the big problem you hoped to address with this presentation? In a typical student teaching experience, there is one teacher candidate paired with one mentor teacher. Often there is a feeling of isolation for the teacher candidate and a…
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Students’ Application of Concavity and Inflection Points to Real-world Contexts

Students’ Application of Concavity and Inflection Points to Real-world Contexts

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In mathematics education, much of what is taught connects to the outside world. However, there are often disconnects between how students learn math in math courses and how they use or apply that math in the real world or in science courses. Past research has shown that this is especially true of calculus content. Dr. Steven Jones chose to study this disconnect from application to other fields by examining the calculus concepts of concavity and inflection points and how they are reasoned qualitatively and quantitatively by students. Dr. Jones conducted his research by giving students currently enrolled in calculus courses particular tasks which dealt with these concepts. Some tasks were ones that would be typically seen in their calculus classes and others dealt with examining these concepts in real world…
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The Structure of Student Teaching Can Change the Focus to Students’ Mathematical Thinking

The Structure of Student Teaching Can Change the Focus to Students’ Mathematical Thinking

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For many undergraduates studying in the field of math education, student teaching serves as a trial run for their real world experience. When structured correctly, student teaching can prepare students to be excellent mathematics teachers when they finally step into their own classroom. However, when the focus of the experience is on classroom management rather than on teaching the educational material, the student teacher fails to garner the skill most vital to their chosen profession: helping students to learn and understand mathematics. In 2006, Dr. Blake Peterson and Dr. Keith Leatham (current chair and associate chair of the BYU Mathematics Education Department) evaluated their traditional approach to student teaching, and then restructured the student teaching experience to better meet the needs of the student teachers and of the program. This…
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