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Research Agenda Conference Report

Research_Agenda_Report_Cover Several years ago, NCTM launched the Research Agenda Project. From this project, Linking Research and Practice—Challenges and Opportunities, was funded through the National Science Foundation (NSF) (NSF DRL # 0736558). This funding allowed NCTM to organize a small conference of mathematics education researchers and practitioners in order to identify a “research agenda that addresses significant problems of practice and is informed by experiences and expertise of practitioners” (NSF proposal, J. Rubillo, PI).

In August 2008, NCTM brought together approximately 60 mathematics education researchers and practitioners for a 4-day working conference. During this working conference, the participants analyzed over 350 mathematics education practitioner-generated questions in seven areas: assessment, curriculum, equity, student learning, technology, teaching, and teacher preparation/professional development. Their work produced a set of questions that communicate practitioners’ needs for research that would affect their practices.

The result of the working conference was the document, Linking Research and Practice: The NCTM Research Agenda Conference Report. The purpose of this document was to:

(a) emphasize the need for communication and collaboration between practitioners and researchers around issues that are important to practitioners;

(b) make practitioners’ research needs, both as initiators and consumers of research, explicit to the mathematics education research community; (c) promote a set of research-guiding questions that focus researchers’ attention on critical problems of practice; and (d) urge funding agencies, policymakers, and other mathematics education stakeholders to support research that is grounded in practitioners’ problems of practice. (Arbaugh et al., 2010)


Read the
Executive Summary.
Read other NCTM resources on linking research and practice:

Connecting Research and Practice at NCTM by the NCTM Research Committee (2007)

The Challenge of Linking Research and Practice by the NCTM Research Committee (2006)

What Can We Expect from Research? by James Hiebert (2000):

Mathematics Teacher 

Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School

Teaching Children Mathematics 


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