Date of Award
Curriculum & Instruction
Curriculum and Instruction
The purpose of this study was to ascertain pre-service teachers' perceptions of the defining aspects of a mathematics methods course that aided in the development of a conceptual understanding of mathematics. These perceptions emerge from the narratives of four pre-service teachers in a mid-size metropolitan university in the southeastern part of the United States. Grounded in the theory of constructivism this study focuses on the educational experiences of pre-service teachers, as reported by pre-service teachers, creating a portrait of their journey. These pre-service teachers' learning experiences were based on national standards with a constructivist instructional approach and included field experience in a school environment. Analysis of the data revealed that pre-service teachers attributed their increase in conceptual understanding of mathematics to 'touching/doing activities' that required them to 'explain why'. Use of models and manipulatives aided in helping the pre-service teachers verify and justify their solutions to others, providing concrete items to use in explaining abstract concepts. Ultimately, requiring pre-service to explain their own thought processes, with and without manipulatives, aided them in developing a conceptual understanding of mathematics.
Edmiston, Patricia, "Student Perceptions of the Defining Aspects of a Mathematics Methods Course that Aided in the Development of a Conceptual Understanding of Mathematics" (2005). University of New Orleans Theses and Dissertations. 149.