Education Publications

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2011

Journal

Literacy Information and Computer Education

Volume

1

Issue

4

First Page

313

Last Page

322

Abstract

Problem solving as a pedagogical practice is a recent focus of mathematics education research and of professional learning. This study employs the phenomenographic framework for studying teachers’ conceptions of ongoing professional learning opportunities focused on the teaching of mathematics through problem solving. Eleven grade 7 to 8 school teachers who participated in ongoing professional learning over the course of one to five years were purposively selected. Survey method was employed. Findings from the study reveal that most teachers view professional learning mainly as a source for ideas and resources, whereas others hold more complex views ranging from viewing professional learning as an opportunity for sharing strategies with colleagues, to seeing professional learning as an opportunity for deepening understandings of learning, and as a catalyst for change in practices of teaching mathematics. The study recommends teacher professional development programs to focus on developing more sophisticated conceptions of professional learning among teachers.

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