Indicator P.2.3. Provide Sustained, Quality Experiences

An effective mathematics teacher preparation program provides multiple and high-quality opportunities for candidates to learn mathematics relevant to teaching in varied settings across the program. |

Mathematics content experiences need to be in-depth, focused, and enacted in varied settings; they should not be diluted, superficial, or limited solely to college classrooms. Assigning one course or even a sequence of courses as an isolated experience does not fulfill the spirit of this standard; engagement with rich content opportunities must be coupled with ongoing integrated learning experiences in mathematics, such as analyzing mathematics content within the context of designing a mathematics lesson for a methods class or clinical experience. Program personnel must acknowledge that deep understanding of mathematics content and practice includes a sustained focus on mathematical ideas throughout all aspects of the program. Mathematics methods or pedagogy courses must be specifically focused on the teaching of mathematics with clear attention to correct mathematics content and productive mathematical practices and processes (i.e., ways of engaging in mathematics). Field experiences and induction experiences must also include a focus on the teaching of important mathematical content, with content-specific rubrics used to evaluate lessons in observations by mentor teachers and university supervisors. As discussed in indicator P.2.2, mathematics content courses should be taught using teaching methods that serve as models of effective instruction. Effective programs instill in beginning teachers the understanding that they will continue to learn mathematics throughout their careers while they make the transition from learning mathematics to joining the profession as teachers of mathematics. Effective programs provide candidates opportunities to learn mathematics by studying mathematics curriculum materials (Davis & Krajcik, 2005). In addition, effective programs provide opportunities for candidates to learn mathematics in collaboration with their colleagues as part of a learning community (NCTM, 2014a).

Opportunities to learn mathematics relevant to teaching may come in mathematics courses and may also be included in other aspects of the program, including clinical experiences, methods courses, involvement in professional mathematics education organizations (local, state, or national), tutoring, service learning, clubs, or research experiences, when these aspects are focused on school mathematics content.