"Mathematical knowledge for teaching and the mathematical quality of instruction: A study of novice elementary school teachers"
Her research utilizes a variety of methodologies including design-based research, pre- and post-test comparisons, experimental and quasi-experimental studies, and research-practice partnerships. Santagata serves as the current director of UCI's Education Center for Research on Teacher Development and Professional Practice, as the School of Education's Global Engagement liaison, and as the DECADE Faculty Mentor. She has contributed as a visiting scholar, Institute of Advanced Studies, Alma Mater Studiorum, Bologna, Italy in 2019, and a visiting professor at the Technische Universität Berlin, Germany from 2018 to 2019.
Lee studies mathematics education, teacher learning and development, equitable practices in mathematics classrooms, and research-practice partnerships. She is particularly interested in understanding the ways in which critical reflection supports teacher candidates to enact equitable practices in mathematics classrooms. Lee is specializing in Learning, Teaching, Cognition, and Development. Professor Santagata serves as her advisor.
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.