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A Case Study Of The Mathematical Learning Of Two Teachers Acquiring Mathematical Knowledge For Teaching, David R. Hartman Dec 2010

A Case Study Of The Mathematical Learning Of Two Teachers Acquiring Mathematical Knowledge For Teaching, David R. Hartman

Public Access Theses, Dissertations, and Student Research from the College of Education and Human Sciences

This study offers an analysis of the learning of practicing teachers as they acquire a deeper knowledge of mathematics. While some professional developers have shifted part of their focus to helping practicing teachers acquire a deeper knowledge of mathematics (e.g., Stein & Silver, 1996), the results from studies often describe what translates from the professional development experience into classroom practice and measureable gains in student achievement (e.g., Desimone et al., 2002). Studies showing improvements in pedagogy and student learning are important. However, studying what teachers are learning and how they learn is important in developing understanding of the content and process of teachers’ learning.

This case study describes the mathematical learning of two middle level mathematics teachers while participating in a National Science Foundation-funded math professional development institute based on recommendations of the Conference Board of the Mathematical Sciences (CBMS) (2001). The overarching question guiding this research is: How do teachers deepen their understanding of the mathematics content they teach? The analysis is guided, in part, by mathematical habits of mind (e.g., Cuoco et al., 1996); or ways teachers engage in mathematical practices to strengthen their understanding of mathematical content and communication to others.

Data collected from two teachers to study their learning include: teachers’ written coursework and reflections, observations of teachers’ work and interactions solving problems, and interviews and classroom observations. Qualitative data analysis (Stake, 1995) indicates three findings. First, both teachers embrace ...


Teacher Collaboration As Professional Development In A Large, Suburban High School, Marlie L. Williams Oct 2010

Teacher Collaboration As Professional Development In A Large, Suburban High School, Marlie L. Williams

Public Access Theses, Dissertations, and Student Research from the College of Education and Human Sciences

This qualitative study explored the impact of teacher collaboration in a professional learning communities (PLC) school on teacher self-efficacy. Through the collection and analysis of personal interview data from 20 teachers in a large, suburban Midwestern high school, the impact of structured teacher collaboration was evaluated for its impact on changes in teachers’ instructional practices, their feelings of responsibility for student learning, positive adult interdependence, and changes in teacher self-efficacy. Experts in educational professional development identify the importance of sustained, collegial learning. This study explored the structure of one high school’s professional collaboration model, the measures in place for ...