Studies in Philosophy and Education
, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 127146
From Searle’s Chinese room to the mathematics classroom: technical and cognitive mathematics
 Dimitris GavalasAffiliated withMathematics, Pedagogical InstituteGreece Email author
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Employing Searle’s views, I begin by arguing that students of Mathematics behave similarly to machines that manage symbols using a set of rules. I then consider two types of Mathematics, which I call Cognitive Mathematics and Technical Mathematics respectively. The former type relates to concepts and meanings, logic and sense, whilst the latter relates to algorithms, heuristics, rules and application of various techniques. I claim that an upgrade in the school teaching of Cognitive Mathematics is necessary. The aim is to change the current mentality of the stakeholders so as to compensate for the undue value presently attached to Technical Mathematics, due to advances in technology and its applications, and thus render the two sides of Mathematics equal. Furthermore, I suggest a reorganization/systematization of School Mathematics into a cognitive network to facilitate students’ understanding of the subject. The final goal is the transition from mechanical execution of rules to better understanding and indepth knowledge of Mathematics.
Keywords
Chinese room Mathematics classroom Education Cognitive mathematics Technical mathematics Title
 From Searle’s Chinese room to the mathematics classroom: technical and cognitive mathematics
 Journal

Studies in Philosophy and Education
Volume 26, Issue 2 , pp 127146
 Cover Date
 200703
 DOI
 10.1007/s112170069018y
 Print ISSN
 00393746
 Online ISSN
 1573191X
 Publisher
 Kluwer Academic Publishers
 Additional Links
 Topics
 Keywords

 Chinese room
 Mathematics classroom
 Education
 Cognitive mathematics
 Technical mathematics
 Authors

 Dimitris Gavalas ^{(1)}
 Author Affiliations

 1. Mathematics, Pedagogical InstituteGreece, Folois 6, Athens, 11256, Greece