Marta Civil

  • 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

    Marta Civil


    Dr. Marta Civil received a BS degree in mathematics from the University of Barcelona in Spain in 1981. Continuing her education, she received an MS degree in teaching mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1985 and a PhD in education in the field of mathematics education from the same university. She joined the Department of Mathematics at the University of Arizona in 1990, where she is a professor and presently holds the Roy F. Grasser Endowed Chair.

    She is not only a very capable mathematics scholar but also an outstanding individual who cares about her work, her colleagues, and her students. One of her most notable achievements is that she served as the lead principal investigator for the National Science Foundation-funded Center for the Mathematics Education of Latinos. She is noted for her ability to continually organize a large and complex project that involved four research universities over the course of a decade. Dr. Civil's scholarly work has been and continues to be innovative and unique in mathematics education. She is nationally known for developing the project Math and Parent Partnerships in the Southwest, which was an NSF-funded project involving immigrant parents, primarily women whose home country is Mexico, in learning about mathematics education in the United States.

    Dr. Civil has a tremendous amount of energy and continued passion for diversity, equity, and social justice in mathematics education, incorporating a sociocultural framework in her scholarship. She is well known for her work to examine the intersection of assets that the immigrant Mexican community brings to mathematics education. Her passion is to persevere and do important work in mathematics education, a field still dominated by cognition and generally void of historical considerations.

    In her almost 40-year career, Dr. Civil has amassed an impressive scholarly record, publishing approximately 45 refereed journal articles, co-editing 11 books, and authoring more than 50 book chapters. She is particularly successful in securing large federally funded grant projects. As a Latinx scholar, she is dedicated to mentoring and supporting students of color for success.

    Dr. Civil has transformed the education field, drawing attention to the assets of the Mexican immigrant population and playing a leading role in ensuring the preparation of the next generation of leaders in the nation who have expertise in both mathematics education and bilingual education. In 2020, Professor Marta Civil was named the University Distinguished Outreach Professor at the University of Arizona, recognizing her innovative work, which brilliantly merges outreach and research, and making her an internationally renowned scholar as well as a valuable member of the community. She has served as an officer and on various committees for the National Academy of Sciences, the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators, the NCTM Research Committee, TODOS-Mathematics for All, and Psychology in Mathematics Education.