New publication: "Mathematical Knowledge for Teaching and the Mathematical Quality of Instruction: A Study of Novice Elementary School Teachers"
Associate Professor of Education Rossella Santagata and doctoral student Jiwon Lee publish in the Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education: "Mathematical Knowledge for Teaching and the Mathematical Quality of Instruction: A Study of Novice Elementary School Teachers."
Dr. Santagata's research interests include mathematics education, video and multimedia in teacher learning, culture and learning, and equity and education. Lee, a fourth year doctoral student specializing in Learning, Teaching, Cognition, and Development (LTCD), is advised by Santagata. Lee is focusing her research on mathematics education, teacher effectiveness, reflective practice in teaching and learning, and use of classroom videos to improve instruction.
This study examines the association between mathematical knowledge for teaching and instructional quality in a sample of first-year elementary school teachers. Ten teachers completed the mathematical knowledge for teaching (MKT) survey at the end of teacher preparation. Three mathematics lessons taught during their first year of teaching were videotaped and scored using the Mathematical Quality of Instruction. Findings replicate prior studies that were conducted with more experienced teachers. A strong, positive and statistically significant association was found between teacher knowledge and the mathematics is clear and not distorted dimension of instructional quality. In addition, associations of moderate strength were found between MKT and other dimensions of instructional quality centered on the mathematics taught in the lesson. Analyses also revealed individual differences among teachers and raised the question of what other factors might impact instructional quality. Three cases studies highlight the role of lesson design, mathematics tasks, and participation structures that support or inhibit instructional quality and the use of knowledge during teaching. Conclusions suggest that preparation and induction programs should include a focus on individual teachers’ mathematical knowledge for teaching, the development of a student-centered vision of mathematics instruction, and tailored support during the first year of teaching.