Research Projects in Mathematics Education
College Of Education / 105 Aderhold Hall / UGA


Projects in Mathematics Education

 

PIRC: Providing Internet Resources for Classrooms (1994-95)

PIRC is a project to provide classroom teachers access to the Internet and to aid them in effectively using the Internet in their classrooms. The project is based at the University of Georgia in the Mathematics Education program and is funded by an Eisenhower Grant. Currently the project is working with Barnett Shoals Elementary School, Oconee County High School, Greene County High School, Jackson County Comprehensive High School, and Elbert County High School.

We conducted a workshop on using the Internet as part of classroom mathematics teaching on July 31 - August 4, 1994. As a result of that workshop two of the participating schools have now created their own homepages on the Web (see links above).

Please watch this page for further news about the project.

Current Project Personnel and their email addresses:

Here is a list of sources that might be useful to classroom teachers.

Click to return to the Mathematics Education home page.


InGEAR: Integrating Gender Equity and Reform (1994-1997)

In GEAR is a 3 year, collaborative project of five Georgia Universities and is funded by the National Science Foundation. The five participating universities are University of Georgia, Georgia Institute of Technology, Georgia State University, Georgia Southern University, and Clark-Atlanta University. The American Association and University women and the Georgia Initiative in Mathematics and Science are also collaborating on the project.

The three year project proposes to change the ways that elementary, middle, and high school teachers learn to teach science and mathematics. The project has two main objectives: To initiate and implement the redesign of teacher preparation programs, including instruction in science, engineering, and mathematics courses, so that teachers entering K-12 classrooms are able to address issues that discourage girls and women from participating in scientific and technological fields; and to provide professional development opportunities for faculty, graduate, and undergraduate teaching assistants which will equip them with positive support and intervention strategies.

The achieve the project goals, the project has four strands: an institutional self-evaluation; professional development of faculty and teaching assistants; a toolkit of materials for teacher preparation courses; and a prototype teacher preparation program. The University of Georgia will take the lead in developing the toolkit of materials for the five institutions.

The principal investigator for the grant is Carolyn Thorsen of the Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics, and Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Co-principal investigators from UGA are Larry Hatfield, Mathematics Education, and Michael Padilla, Science Education and Georgia Initiative in Mathematics and Science. Denise Mewborn will assume the leadership role in the development of the toolkit of materials.

Click to return to the Mathematics Education home page.


Project RADIATE: Research And Development Initiatives Applied to Teacher Education (1994-1997)

Directors: Tom Cooney and Pat Wilson, Mathematics Education

Project RADIATE is a three year project which was funded by the National Science Foundation to improve the preparation of prospective secondary mathematics teachers. The primary aim of the project is to upgrade both the mathematical and educational experiences of preservice secondary teachers and to provide a context in which mathematicians and mathematics educators concerned with the education of secondary mathematics teachers have a forum to discuss practical and theoretical implications of developing innovative programs. In addition to UGA, RADIATE involves five additional sites: North Georgia College, Georgia State University, University of Michigan, SUNY Buffalo, and University of Rochester. Each site is to produce materials appropriate for using in secondary teacher education programs and to conduct research in concert with the development and use.

Preservice Mathematics Teacher Preparation

At the University of Georgia site, the preservice teachers are heavily involved in school-based programs which include observations, teaching small groups of students, and teaching technologically enhanced lessons. The University received matching funds from the State which financed the establishment of a technologically enhanced classroom and 10 powerbooks that student teachers can take with them to use in the field. We feel that our students are well prepared to use technology to teach mathematics and to communicate with professors via e-mail. The major responsibilities of the UGA site are accomplished by 2 faculty members and 5 doctoral students. The first cohort of secondary students to complete the modified program will graduate in June 1995.

Summer Mathematics Education Institutes

During the summers of 1995 and 1996 project RADIATE will underwrite the cost of holding summer institutes for others concerned with educating secondary teachings. The institutes will address such topics as integrating content and pedagogy, real world applications of mathematics, using technology in the teaching of mathematics, cultural diversity, and authentic assessment. The 1995 institute will be held from July 24-July 28. We are expecting to attract mathematicians and mathematics educators from around the country.

Research

The research part of the program involves conducting case studies of the teachers as they progress through their undergraduate program and on into their first and second year of teaching. Recently the staff submitted five proposals for presentation at the annual Psychology in Mathematics Education meeting to be held next October. The papers addressed issues of the ways the teachers know mathematics, the beliefs they held about teaching and the use of technology, their views of interactive classrooms, and the struggles and tensions that emerge as they progress through the program. Two presentations will be given at the NCTM meeting in April . We expect to submit other papers as we follow these and other teachers into their first year of teaching.

Impact on Program and Service

As a result of project RADIATE we are considering ways to revise our secondary teacher education program. The project has provided a great opportunity for the professional development of graduate students in addition to the undergraduates. We have also been able to connect this project to inservice projects addressing co-reform, assessment, technology, and mathematics curricular reform in grades K-12 .

Click to return to the Mathematics Education home page.


Children's Construction of the Rational Numbers of Arithmetic (1991 -- )

This NSF-funded project is attempting to understand children's development of fraction and rational number concepts from a radical constructivist viewpoint. The project began working with students beginning in third grade and followed them through fifth grade.

The students work in pairs with a teacher in one of three computer microworlds written for the project. Tasks are posed by the teacher and the students' work is videotaped for later analysis. Through such analysis, we intend to identify mental operations developed by the students as they construct fractions and rational numbers.

Principal investigators in the project are Les Steffe and John Olive.

Click to return to the Mathematics Education home page.