Plenary Speakers

The conference program is available at this link.

Thursday Evening

En la lucha/In the Struggle! Researching What Makes a Difference in Mathematics Education

  • Speaker:
    • Sandra Crespo, Michigan State University

Sandra Crespo is a Professor of mathematics education at Michigan State University. She researches learning and teaching practices that disrupt and redistribute power dynamics in the mathematics classroom. She is no stranger to this year’s PME-NA theme: “Sin Fronteras! - Without Borders!” Living between three countries, Dominican Republic, Canada, and the U.S., she is constantly crossing geographical, cultural, linguistic, and intellectual borders. Within mathematics education she straddles the worlds of elementary/secondary education, of formal/informal mathematics, of theory/practice and of equity/excellence debates. She has learned to embrace the tension and burden of working within and across these boundaries. She weaves her personal and professional commitments to anti-oppressive education by approaching her work in collaboration with colleagues, schools, and teachers committed to social change. Recent publications that embody these commitments include Smarter Together: Collaboration and Equity in the Elementary Mathematics Classroom, and Cases for Teacher Educators: Facilitating Conversations about Inequities in Mathematics Classrooms. She is currently the Editor of the Mathematics Teacher Educator journal.

  • Discussant:
    • Anna Sfard, University of Haifa

Anna Sfard is a Professor of Mathematics Education at the University of Haifa, Israel. In her research, grounded in the assumption that thinking is a form of communication, she studies the development of mathematical discourse in the classroom and beyond. Her book Thinking as communication (Cambridge University Press) is an interim summary of this research. She is the recipient of 2007 Freudenthal Award and the Fellow of American Educational Research Association (AERA). She served as the first Lappan-Philips-Fitzgerald Professor at Michigan State University, USA, and has been the Visiting Professor in the Institute of Education, University College London, UK and at the University of California, Berkeley.  

Friday Joint Plenary Session

Coordinating Perspectives: Examples from Undergraduate Mathematics

  • Speakers:
    • María Trigueros Gaisman, Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México
    • Chris Rasmussen, San Diego State University
  • Facilitator:
    • Aditya Adiredja, University of Arizona

In this joint plenary, Dr. María Trigueros Gaisman and Dr. Chris Rasmussen discuss their respective work in coordinating multiple theoretical perspectives and frameworks in analyzing learning at the undergraduate level. Dr. Trigueros Gaisman illustrates insights on pedagogy resulting from putting the Action Process Object Schema (APOS) theory in dialogue with other theories and approaches, including Anthropological Theory of the Didactic (ATD) (Chevallard, 1997) and Semiotic Representation Theory (Duval, 2006). Dr. Rasmussen seeks to develop a more comprehensive account of learning by coordinating analyses of individual students and their classroom community. As an extension to the Interpretive Framework (Cobb & Yackel, 1996), Dr. Rasmussen focuses his analyses on disciplinary practices, classroom mathematical practices, individual participation in mathematical activity, and mathematical conceptions that individuals bring to bear in their mathematical work. Both presentations use topics from Calculus, Linear Algebra and Differential Equations as contexts for their investigation and discussion."

María Trigueros is Professor of mathematics at the Department of Mathematics at Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM). Her research interest focuses primarily on students’ learning of mathematics. She has mainly used APOS (Action Process Object Schema) theory in her research concerning undergraduate mathematics, but she has also used other theories and explored possible links with APOS Theory. She has coordinated two national projects on the use of technology in the teaching of mathematics at the middle and elementary school levels. She is currently working on two projects, one on the learning of Calculus, from Calculus 1 to differential equations, and another one about using models in Linear Algebra. She has collaborated for a long time with PME NA and was for several years a member of the steering committee, and was one of the organizers of the PME NA Conference at Mérida, México in 2006.

Chris Rasmussen is Professor of mathematics education in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at San Diego State University. His research investigates inquiry-oriented approaches to the learning and teaching of undergraduate mathematics. His work in differential equations and linear algebra has led to methodological advances for coordinating individual and collective mathematical progress as well as instructional approaches that begin with students’ informal or intuitive ideas to progressively build more formal mathematics and the role of the instructor in this process. Currently he is leading a national study of the Precalculus to Calculus 2 sequence with the goal of better understanding current departmental practices related to these course and the institutional change process as departments work to improve the first two years of their undergraduate program.

Saturday Panel Plenary

Panel on Challenging Borders in Mathematics Education

  • Panelists:
    • Julia Maria Aguirre, University of Washington, Tacoma
    • Lisa Lunney Borden, St. Francis Xavier University
    • Olimpia Figueras, Cinvestav
  • Moderator:
    • Carlos LópezLeiva, University of New Mexico

Julia Maria Aguirre is an associate professor of education at the University of Washington Tacoma. Her work examines issues of equity in mathematics teaching and learning, teacher education, and culturally responsive mathematics pedagogy. She investigates the role of student mathematical thinking, cultural/linguistic funds of knowledge and issues of power and status in mathematics instruction. A primary goal of her work is preparing new generations of teachers to make mathematics education accessible, meaningful and relevant to today’s youth. She has taught middle and high school mathematics in formal and out-of school settings. She has been a co-principal investigator on two National Science Foundation funded projects: Center for the Mathematics Education of Latinos/as (CEMELA) and Teachers Empowered to Advance Change in Mathematics (TEACH MATH) and is a co-author of the book, The Impact of Identity in k-8 mathematics: Rethinking equity-based practices (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, 2013).

Lisa Lunney Borden is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Teacher Education at St. Francis Xavier University in Canada. She teaches mostly mathematics education courses at both the undergraduate and graduate level. She began her career teaching grades 7-12 mathematics at We’koqma’q First Nation Secondary School, a Mi’kmaw community-run school. She credits her students and the Mi’kmaw community for inspiring her to think differently about mathematics education. She is most interested in examining strategies to transform mathematics education for Aboriginal students with a focus on equity, diversity, and the inclusion of multiple worldviews.

Olimpia Figueras is a researcher of the Departmento de Matemática Educativa (DME) at the Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute (known as Cinvestav) in Mexico City. In DME she carries out two main activities: research and teaching, the latter centered on preparing new generations of researchers in mathematics education. She has been Head of the DME and the principal investigator of two projects founded by the National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt), both related to low attainment in mathematics including students from different indigenous groups. Her domains of research are the design of teaching models to support students to be competent users of arithmetical concepts and operations and teachers to be competent facilitators of mathematical activities in their classroom. With Mirela Rigo, she set up a professional development program for mathematics teachers of basic education at Cinvestav which was founded by the Educational Services Integrated to the State of México (SEIEM).