Pathways to Calculus: Disseminating and Scaling a Professional Development Model for Algebra Through Precalculus Teaching and Learning

Project: Research project

Project Details


The NSF MSP Phase II grant (#1050721) Pathways to Calculus: Disseminating and Scaling a Professional Development Model for Algebra through Precalculus Teaching and Learning extends our work by scaling the professional development model (P3DM). Specifically we partner with high school and department mathematics leaders to support all their mathematics teachers in adopting P3DM in algebra through precalculus. This phase II project builds on Project Pathways findings in five broad categories that are critical for supporting mathematics teachers to realize significant shifts in their students learning of key ideas of mathematics. These categories are: i) teachers knowledge of the mathematics they teach, ii) teachers beliefs about what constitutes effective mathematics learning and teaching; iii) teachers ability to engage in reflection on student thinking and learning in relation to their teaching; iv) teachers use of curricular support materials that promote inquiry based and conceptually oriented instruction; and v) teachers participation in Pathways Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). Pathways to Calculus Phase II began in August 2011 and we have scaled from 46 teachers to 117 teachers during the first year of the three year grant. During the summer of 2012, Dr. Teuscher recruited the Nebo School District (5 high schools and 2 junior highs) to join the project. In August two 3-day workshops were held for all P3DM teachers implementing the Pathways secondary math II curriculum during the 2012-13 school year. This consisted of 26 teachers (2 special educators, 2 junior high teachers and 22 high school teachers). We are collecting data based on the five categories listed above on a sample of the teachers as well as the approximately 2000 students enrolled in the secondary math II classes and another 1000 students as part of the control group. The scaling up has resulted in more than twice as many classroom teachers across three states involved in the project. Although the goal is to scale up the number of teachers as part of the Phase II grant, we scaled at a quicker rate than was expected. Dr. Teuscher also moved to BYU where she does not have access to graduate students who are funded through the grant. In order to accommodate these additional teachers, this REU supplemental request is being submitted. The supplement will be used to support two undergraduate researchers at $5K each throughout the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school years to work on research projects associated with the Nebo school district. The supplement will allow two undergraduate future mathematics teachers to participate in and contribute to the educational research conducted in the project. One goal is for the selected students to work on a research team and be mentored by myself as well as the other faculty on the project at ASU. A second goal is for the students to gain an understanding and introduction to mathematics education research and make a contribution to the field. A third goal is for the students to advance and progress in their education with the ultimate aim for them to apply their knowledge gained from the educational research to their own mathematics classrooms as they become certified teachers and/or are admitted to graduate school to pursue advanced degrees after teaching in the classroom.
Effective start/end date9/1/118/31/15


  • National Science Foundation (NSF): $2,123,451.00


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