Now showing 1 - 10 of 29
  • Publication
    Maths Sparks: Developing Community and Widening Participation
    Improving the engagement of university students in wider issues of teaching and learning is now an important driver in higher education. Additionally, widening the participation of those who access higher education is a matter of increasing prominence. In this paper we report on a case study initiative addressing both of these issues in a university mathematics department. Staff and university students collaborated in developing a series of mathematics workshops, called Maths Sparks, for secondary school pupils from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds. We report on the development of student-staff community as a result of establishing this programme and discuss the increased engagement and motivation of both university students and secondary pupils participating in the series of activity-based workshops.
  • Publication
    Analysing mathematics teacher learning in lesson study - a proposed theoretical framework
    (European Society for Research Methods in Mathematics Education, 2017-02) ;
    The purpose of this paper is to analyse the development of teacher knowledge for mathematics through teacher participation in lesson study. Analysis is undertaken utilising an extended framework which combines both the theoretical frameworks of Mathematical Knowledge for Teaching (Ball et al., 2008) and Levels of Teacher Activity (Margolinas et al., 2005). The proposed framework is situated as a tool to detail and analyse the use and evolution of mathematics teacher knowledge in planning, conducting, and reflecting on research lessons in a lesson study cycle in a primary-school case study in Switzerland.
  • Publication
    Lesson Study Introductory Booklet
    (Professional Development Service for Teachers, 2018-01) ;
    Lesson study is a model of professional development which supports teacher learning through collaboration. Lesson study consists of a cycle of phases, where a group of teachers work together to plan, conduct, observe and reflect on a research lesson. Through these phases, teachers share their knowledge and experience and have opportunity to collaboratively identify, trial and reflect on new practices. By participating in lesson study, teachers become researchers of their own practice through their investigation of innovative pedagogical approaches, with careful consideration of pupil learning. Teachers who have participated in lesson study have noted positive changes in their classroom practices and in their collaborations with colleagues. Research has also indicated that participation in lesson study has the potential to positively impact pupil learning, develop teacher knowledge and build teacher community (Lewis & Perry, 2017; Ni Shuilleabhain & Seery, 2017; Lieberman, 2009).
  • Publication
    Lesson Study and Project Maths: A Professional Development Intervention for Mathematics Teachers Engaging in a New Curriculum
    (British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics, 2014-04-17)
    Since 2010 there has been a phased introduction of a new post-primary mathematics curriculum in Ireland entitled 'Project Maths'. This new curriculum places a greater emphasis on problem solving and on an investigative approach for students. This implies not only changes in the curriculum content, but also changes to teaching and learning approaches within the classroom. This research aims to provide teachers with a school-based professional development structure through which they can engage with the curriculum and attempt new teaching and learning strategies. This structure involves mathematics teachers engaging in lesson study as a professional development intervention and is investigated in two schools (phase 1 and phase 2 of Project Maths). Teachers engage in lesson study cycles repeated throughout the academic year and the research questions how effective an approach this may be in encouraging teachers to engage with and implement a new centralised mathematics curriculum. The research also investigates how effective an approach this may be in developing teachers’ pedagogical practices. In this paper, initial findings will be discussed from teacher research meetings and interviews.
  • Publication
    Progress made on women in science - but much still to do
    (Friends of Europe, 2017-03)
    Europe ’s World The academic fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics – known as STEM – are becoming progressively more important to economies around the globe. But while the number of people working in STEM is increasing, women are still significantly under-represented, and this gender disparity becomes more and more prominent at senior levels.
  • Publication
    An attitudinal snapshot of pre-service secondary mathematics teachers
    (Western Australian Institute for Educational Research, 2020-02-08) ; ; ; ;
    A teacher’s attitude towards a subject has a major influence on their learning and subsequent teaching of that subject. This has a knock-on effect on the development of their own students’ attitudes. However, despite such importance there has been a dearth of research in this area, particularly in relation to the attitudes of pre-service secondary teachers of mathematics. Thus, the aim of this study is to quantify the attitudes of this cohort of teachers at the beginning of their initial teacher education (ITE) program. The participants in the study are pre-service teacher cohorts (N = 98) from four Irish universities who are enrolled in a postgraduate ITE program, known as the Professional Master of Education (PME). Six sub-scales of the overall Fennema-Sherman Mathematics Attitudes Scales (FSMAS) were used to gain a quantitative measure of participants’ attitudes towards the subject as they embarked on their ITE. The FSMAS scores were strongly positive, although the results of the mathematics anxiety and teacher subscales were notably lower in comparison to the others. Further analysis was carried out to identify affecting factors, particularly in relation to these two low-ranking subscales.
  • Publication
    Scoping the current system of support for early career researchers in Ireland
    In 2018, the Royal Irish Academy convened a working group to undertake a scoping project to provide a snapshot of the perceptions and experiences of early career researchers (ECRs) in higher education institutions (HEIs) on the island of Ireland. Through focus groups conducted in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, the Academy explored the views and experiences of ECRs from several HEIs and disciplines. The qualitative data gathered provides rich detail and context to the experiences of ECRs on the island of Ireland.
  • Publication
    Defining and Supporting Public Engagement at University College Dublin: Summary Report
    Public engagement is recognised as a pathway to impact and currently there is an increased focus from policy and funding agencies on how universities engage with diverse audiences beyond the institution. There are already a wide range of creative and innovative public engagement activities underway across UCD. These include a spectrum of forms of engagement from informing and inspiring audiences through lectures or articles, to co-producing and co-designing research with members of the public (including patients and other stakeholders). A Public Engagement (PE) Working Group was recently established to further develop a culture of public engagement in UCD. The PE Working Group established that a definition of public engagement in UCD should be developed. This was done through a number of collaborative workshops with UCD staff (academic and administrative) and a workshop with members of the public held during the UCD Festival on the June 6th 2018. Without any information available on the public engagement activities that are underway across the university, the PE Working Group undertook a census of public engagement activity in UCD. A total of 322 submissions were received in the census. Based on the census and workshops, the PE Working Group outline key proposals to develop a more supported, cohesive and encultured approach to Public Engagement in our university.
  • Publication
    Developing Problem-solving Approaches to Teaching: Theory and Practice
    George Polya’s book, How to solve it (1945), is likely to have been one of the first books to focus on building students’ skills as problem solvers. Polya, a Hungarian professor of mathematics, realised that it was not sufficient that his students knew their mathematical facts--they also needed to have a relational understanding of the subject in order to use mathematics as a tool. While Polya’s book has provided much food for thought for mathematics educators at all levels throughout the decades, the legacy of his writing is in defining a heuristic or framework for students to solve problems.
  • Publication
    Pre-service mathematics teachers' concerns and beliefs on implementing curricular reform
    (Centre for the Advancement of STEM Teaching and Learning (CASTeL), Faculty of Science and Health, Dublin City University, 2016-06-17) ; ; ;
    In 2010, a major reform of the Irish post-primary mathematics curriculum was introduced. In tandem with this reform, in-service professional development has been made available to all post-primary mathematics teachers, with over 4,000 teachers attending such training (Project Maths Implementation Support Group, 2014). However, as these specialised professional development programmes are presently drawing to a close, newly qualifying mathematics teachers will not have an opportunity to participate in such in-service initiatives. In this research, we investigate the concerns and efficacy beliefs of a cohort of pre-service teachers (PSTs) towards the curriculum reform. 41 PSTs from post-graduate initial teacher education in four third-level institutions in Ireland participated in the research. Preliminary data based on their concerns regarding the reform (Charalambos and Philippou, 2010) and additional qualitative responses are presented in this paper. Findings suggest that at the commencement of their initial teacher education, this group of PSTs are concerned about their knowledge of the reform, have mis-information about the reform, and do not yet show significant concern for the impact of the reform.