Mathematics, mathematics learning, mathematics teaching: Views of student teachers from Singapore and Australia

Year: 1996

Author: Perry, Bob, Conroy, John, Yee, Foong Pui

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Student teachers in Australia, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand , who were in the first year of courses preparing them to teach in primary schools, were asked to solve a one-step ratio problem and to complete the following open sentences about the nature of mathematics and mathematics pedagogy:

In my opinion, mathematics . . .

In my opinion, the process of obtaining mathematics knowledge .

In my opinion, mathematics in schools . . .

In my opinion, pupils involved in the process of obtaining mathematics knowledge .

In my opinion, teaching mathematics in schools .

This paper discusses the results arising from student teachers in Singapore and Australia. In relation to the ratio problem, similarities and differences in terms of success rate, approaches and strategies used by the two country groups are considered. Relationships between these variables and the responses to the `beliefs ' questions also are detailed. Possible causes for these similarities and differences are discussed, with particular emphasis on the curriculum and pedagogical contexts in the two countries.