Preparing students to make contributions in the fields of science, statistics, engineering mathematics, and technology is critical for our country to remain a world leader. To accomplish this, it is important for our middle and high school mathematics teachers to be well prepared for teaching mathematics. The Mathematics of Doing, Understanding, Learning and Educating for Secondary Schools (MODULE(S2)) project creates course materials that provide opportunities for prospective teachers to develop mathematical knowledge as it relates specifically to the work of teaching geometry, statistics, algebra, and modeling. These modules can be used in university mathematics courses by faculty at universities and colleges of all types across the United States. The project promotes effective instruction by offering professional development activities for faculty using the modules during the summers and the school year. Additionally, the project investigates the impact of instruction with the modules on prospective teachers’ knowledge–thereby informing nationwide efforts in teacher education. This five year project builds on efforts by the Mathematics Teacher Education Partnership (MTE-P) to create a gold standard for the preparation of secondary mathematics teachers across its over 90 member universities.
Evidence has mounted in recent decades that to implement sound mathematics instruction, teachers must possess understandings of content that are specifically applied in the work of teaching (mathematical knowledge for teaching – MKT). To develop MKT, prospective teachers need opportunities to use mathematical knowledge to recognize, respond to, and understand mathematical issues that arise in the context of teaching. Findings from plan-do-study-act cycles that used initial modules developed by the project indicate an increase in prospective secondary teachers’ MKT. MODULE(S2) is now expanding these materials and examining the conditions of instruction that impact prospective teachers’ MKT, development of MKT, and expectancy and value in using MKT as a resource for teaching. The project uses mixed methods to provide empirically-based accounts of how factors of quality of instruction and of instructional resources impact prospective teachers’ MKT. In addition, results are used multiple times per year to improve the MODULE(S2) materials through improvement cycles carried out as a part of the Networked Improvement Community design.