Seminar Event Detail

Teaching Mathematics

Date:  Monday, April 07, 2014
Location:  3096 East Hall (5:15 PM to 6:30 PM)

Title:  Examining the Relationship Between Tacit Theories of Intelligence and Beginning Collegiate Mathematics Teaching

Abstract:   Preparing graduate students to teach university courses is a complex endeavor largely left to individual departments to navigate on their own. The literature on preparation for collegiate teaching has established that graduate students enter doctoral programs with different developmental needs and capacities. In addition to these developmental differences, researchers have argued that certain groups of graduate students require different/additional supports in order to be successful undergraduate instructors. This complexity is compounded in disciplines, such as mathematics, which depend on international graduate students to teach introductory courses and bear the burden of preparing large groups of these students with diverse needs. Past studies have focused on these developmental and cultural factors to explain the variation in preparation for teaching. This qualitative study utilized phenomenographic research tools to investigate graduate students' introduction to the work of collegiate mathematics teaching. The study attempts to complement the current research by offering an alternative explanation for the variation seen in beginning teaching experiences - perhaps graduate students personal beliefs regarding intelligence (tacit theories of intelligence) also shape their encounters with training and teaching. The study attempts to explore the following questions: (1) what tacit theories of intelligence do graduate students hold upon entering their doctoral programs? And (2) how might those theories influence how these graduate students perceive the work of teaching, learning, and learning how to teach? This study's findings have implications for the preparation of these graduate student for instruction as well as their own learning.


Speaker:  Esther Enright
Institution:  UM, School of Education

Event Organizer:   Gavin LaRose


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