MATHS 302 : Perspectives in Mathematics Education


2020 Semester Two (1205) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

For people interested in thinking about the social, cultural, political, economic, historical, technological and theoretical ideas that influence mathematics education, who want to understand the forces that shaped their own mathematics education, or who are interested in teaching. Students will develop their ability to communicate ideas in essay form. Recommended preparation: At least 45 points from courses in Mathematics or Statistics.

Course Overview

The course is for people who are interested in thinking about their own learning of mathematics at school and tertiary levels and about the theoretical, cultural and historical ideas that influence mathematics education. You will be introduced to some of the main ideas in contemporary mathematics education, such as issues related to learning theories and their relationship with the teaching of mathematics, assessment, and curriculum.

Recommended preparation: at least 45 points from courses in Mathematics or Statistics.

In this course, you will:
—  consider the forces that shaped your own mathematics education;
—  develop the ability to communicate ideas in writing;
—  broaden your understanding of mathematics and mathematics education;
—  examine factors that have influenced the mathematics you have learnt;
—  think about how we learn mathematics;
—  examine some of the theories that inform teaching practice; and
—  articulate your thinking processes.
In the past those taking this course have included:
•    students who want to find out about mathematics teaching in NZ and elsewhere;
•    mathematics undergraduate students with an interest in education;
•    mathematics majors who want to improve their written and oral communication skills;
•    students preparing to undertake Masters courses in mathematics education.

This course can be taken as part of a BSc or BA, and is good preparation for anyone wanting to postgraduate study in Mathematics Education.
The skills developed in this course are particularly useful for those wishing to have a career that involves communicating mathematics, such as teaching, research, and working in teams in industry.

Course Requirements

No pre-requisites or restrictions

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities
Graduate Profile: Bachelor of Science

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Critically reflect on their own experiences of learning mathematics using concepts and theories in mathematics education (Capability 1)
  2. Evaluate different perspectives in mathematics education for what they offer to teaching and learning mathematics (Capability 1 and 2)
  3. Develop clear, reasoned, logical written arguments based on critical reflection on experience and relevant concepts and theories (Capability 1, 2 and 4)
  4. Design and communicate ideas in mathematics or mathematics education in creative and engaging ways (Capability 4 and 5)
  5. Work collaboratively and constructively in teams to create team products and offer useful, respectful critiques of each other's work (Capability 2, 4 and 5)
  6. Create written essays that demonstrate academic integrity and use appropriate referencing and citation (Capability 4 and 5)
  7. Recognise the cultural, historical, social and political influences that shape mathematics teaching, learning and curriculum in Aotearoa and internationally (Capability 6)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Reading Test 20% Individual Test
Essay 30% Individual Coursework
Creative Product 50% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Reading Test
Creative Product

Learning Resources

Readings will be available on Canvas each week

Special Requirements


Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 15 point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 33 hours of lectures, 36 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 60 hours of work on assignments and/or test preparation.

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website at

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page:

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter (


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 06/07/2020 11:23 a.m.