Math Education: Struggling as the Means and Not the End to Teaching Mathematics
Balaskas, Stephanie A.
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This paper focuses on the combination of learning and teaching mathematics. Specifically, the research investigates whether individuals who struggle with mathematics may later be effective mathematics teachers and, furthermore, which criteria defines math success and which effective teaching. Those research methods used include student interviews, surveys, and .observational research in combination with relevant literature. Upon careful study, I noticed significant similarities and differences between student interviewees, observed consultants, and survey responses pertaining to what it means to be successful in mathematics as well as those features characteristic of effective teaching. According to the research conducted, I came to the conclusion that, yes, individuals who struggle may, in tum, be effective teachers of mathematics. However, the aforementioned situation is subjective. Moreover, there are many factors that must be taken into consideration in order to answer this question appropriately. Lastly, math education as an institution creates the standards by which the terms "math success", "struggle", and "effective teaching" are determined. Thus, the dysfunction that exists within the math education system must be taken into careful consideration when making, such declarations of performance.