Educational Studies in Mathematics

, Volume 87, Issue 2, pp 203–219 | Cite as

Sociological tools in the study of knowledge and practice in mathematics teacher education

  • Diane Parker
  • Jill AdlerEmail author


In this paper, we put Basil Bernstein’s theory of pedagogic discourse to work together with additional theoretical resources to interrogate knowledge and practice in mathematics teacher education. We illustrate this methodology through analysis of an instance of mathematics teacher education pedagogic practice. While the methodology itself is our focus, the particular example provides a compelling story at the heart of which is the problem of integration of knowledge(s) within a pedagogic practice. Here, a constructivist pedagogy is at work, but differentially with respect to teaching/learning mathematics and teaching/learning mathematics teaching. The example illuminates mathematics and teaching, and their co-constitution in a particular pedagogic context.


Mathematics teacher education Pedagogic device Knowledge and practice Evaluative judgement 



This paper forms part of the Quantum research project on Mathematics for Teaching, directed by Jill Adler, at the University of the Witwatersrand. This material is based upon work supported by the National Research Foundation under Grant number FA2006031800003.


Any opinion, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Research Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Higher Education and TrainingPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.University of the WitwatersrandJohannesburgSouth Africa

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