Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

An examination of the potential of secondary mathematics curriculum materials to support teacher and student learning of probabiility and statistics
by Williams, Joshua E., Ed.D., University of Pittsburgh, 2016, 240; 10586352
Abstract (Summary)

The Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSSM) suggest many changes to secondary mathematics education including an increased focus on conceptual understanding and the inclusion of content and processes that are beyond what is currently taught to most high school students. To facilitate these changes, students will need opportunities to engage in tasks that are cognitively demanding in order to develop this conceptual understanding and to engage in such tasks over a breadth of content areas including probability and statistics. However, teachers may have a difficult time facilitating a change from traditional mathematics instruction to instruction that centers around the use of high-level tasks and a focus on conceptual understanding and that include content from the areas of probability and statistics that may go beyond their expertise and experience. Therefore, curriculum materials that promote teacher learning, as well as student learning, may be a critical element in supporting teachers’ enactment of the CCSSM. This study examines three secondary mathematics curriculum materials with the intention of determining both the opportunities they provide for students to engage in high-level tasks and the opportunities for teacher learning. Tasks in the written curriculum materials involving probability and statistics as defined by the CCSSM will be examined for evidence of these opportunities. The results of this examination suggest that one of the three secondary mathematics curriculum materials, Core-Plus Mathematics Project (CPMP), contains high-level tasks addressing many of the probability and statistics standards from the CCSSM. A second curriculum, Interactive Mathematics Program, also contains high-level tasks but has far fewer high-level tasks than CPMP. The third curriculum, Glencoe Mathematics (GM), addresses many of the probability and statistics standards from CCSSM but does so with low-level tasks. None of the three curricula provides ample opportunities for teacher learning in the areas of anticipating student thinking and providing transparency of the pedagogical decisions made by the authors when designing the materials.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Stein, Mary Kay
School: University of Pittsburgh
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-A 78/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Mathematics education, Secondary education, Curriculum development
Keywords: Common Core State Standards, High-level tasks, Teacher learning
Publication Number: 10586352
ISBN: 978-1-369-65725-8
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