The mathematics education group currently consists of four faculty members, Margaret Kinzel , Laurie Cavey , Sasha Wang, and Joe Champion. While their research interests are broadly focused on students’ learning of mathematics at the undergraduate level, and issues relating to the mathematical education of teachers, they each bring special expertise in a variety of areas.
The group’s research areas include: justification of mathematical definitions, terminology, and students’ learning of algebraic notations and proportional reasoning; students’ mathematical thinking and its relation to classroom discourse; and research on the effectiveness of curriculum in mathematics courses for prospective teachers. The group has recently begun a research project aimed at determining the effectiveness of a professional development program for elementary teachers that emphasizes the use of assessment data and classroom discourse in instruction.
The mathematics education faculty are currently involved in the following projects:
- Evaluation of effective instructional practices in STEM foundational courses (CALIPER, NSF)
- Design and evaluation of a professional development program for elementary teachers (funded by the Idaho State Department of Education)
- Leading local partnership in coordination with a nationwide effort to prepare secondary mathematics teachers (MTE-P)
- Implementing and examining service-learning in a mathematics course for prospective K-8 teachers
- Statistical modeling of longitudinal achievement in secondary and post-secondary mathematics.
The department offers a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics-Secondary Education and a Master of Science in Mathematics Education.