Preservice teachers’ conceptions of multidigit wholenumbers

Eva Thanheiser (Portland State University) has written an interesting article that was published online in Educational Studies in Mathematics this week. The article is entitled Investigating further preservice teachers’ conceptions of multidigit whole numbers: refining a framework, and in the article, Thanheiser digs into the domain of (preservice) teachers’ content knowledge of mathematics. Here is the abstract of Thanheiser’s article:

This study was designed to investigate preservice elementary school teachers’ (PSTs’) responses to written standard place-value-operation tasks (addition and subtraction). Previous research established that PSTs can often perform but not explain algorithms and provided a four-category framework for PSTs’ conceptions, two correct and two incorrect. Previous findings are replicated for PSTs toward the end of their college careers, and two conceptions are further analyzed to yield three categories of incorrect views of regrouped digits: (a) consistently as 1 value (all as 1 or all as 10), (b) consistently within but not across contexts (i.e., all as 10 in addition but all as 1 in subtraction), and (c) inconsistently (depending on the task).

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