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March 2011, Volume 42, Issue 2

FEATURES

Abstract or Concrete Examples in Learning Mathematics? A Replication and Elaboration of Kaminski, Sloutsky, and Heckler’s Study
Dirk De Bock, Johan Deprez, Wim Van Dooren, Michel Roelens, and Lieven Verschaffel
Kaminski, Sloutsky, and Heckler (2008a) published in Science a study on “The advantage of abstract examples in learning math,” in which they claim that students may benefit more from learning mathematics through a single abstract, symbolic representation than from multiple concrete examples. This publication elicited both enthusiastic and critical comments by mathematicians, mathematics educators, and policymakers worldwide. The current empirical study involves a partial replication—but also an important validation and extension—of this widely noticed study.

Mathematics Learned by Young Children in an Intervention Based on Learning Trajectories: A Large-Scale Cluster Randomized Trial
Douglas H. Clements, Julie Sarama, Mary Elaine Spitler, Alissa A. Lange, and Christopher B. Wolfe
This study employed a cluster randomized trial design to evaluate the effectiveness of a research-based intervention for improving the mathematics education of very young children. This intervention includes the Building Blocks mathematics curriculum, which is structured in research-based learning trajectories, and congruous professional development emphasizing teaching for understanding via learning trajectories and technology.

Discourse Research in Mathematics Education: A Critical Evaluation of 108 Journal Articles
Andreas Ryve
There has been increased engagement in studying discourse in the field of mathematics education. But what exactly is a discourse, and how do researchers go about analyzing discourses? This study examines 108 articles from 6 international journals in mathematics education by asking questions such as these: In which traditions and in relation to which kinds of epistemological assumptions are the articles situated? How is the concept of discourse used and defined? How are mathematical aspects of the discourse accentuated?

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Editorial: Strengthening Manuscript Submissions