Mathematics Education Colloquium Series

This lecture series in Mathematics Education is supported by Teachers for a New Era (TNE), and is organized by Profs. CK Cheung and Solomon Friedberg (Mathematics) and Prof. Lillie Albert (Teacher Education). It is intended for math educators at all levels, school administrators and support staff, mathematicians interested in K-12 math education, and future math educators. In-service mathematics teachers are especially encouraged to attend, as are all Noyce Teaching Fellows and Master Teaching Fellows who are participating in BC's NSF funded program "Exemplary Mathematics Educators for High-need Schools."

2019-2020 Colloquium Schedule

Note: This year the Mathematics Education Colloquium Series is sponsored jointly by Boston College and Boston University and talks will take place at both institutions. We welcome this partnership with our BU colleagues!

September 24, 2019

Speaker: Dr. Robert Q. Berry, III, Samuel Braley Gray Professor of Education, University of Virginia and President, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

Time: 4:30 p.m.

Location: Campion Hall, Room 139, Boston College

Title: Catalyzing Change: Identity, Agency, Positionality, and Equitable Instructional Practices

Abstract: This session makes connections between equitable instructional practices and identity, agency and positionality. Specifically, the session uses a vignette to examine how high cognitively demanding task provides opportunities to engage learners in meaning discourse, positioning learners as mathematically competent. The session uses mathematical discourse community as a framework for connecting mathematics norms of discourse to identity and agency. While this session highlights Catalyzing Change for High School Mathematics, the discussions of teaching practices that cultivate identity, agency, and positionality is appropriate for all educators.

October 23, 2019

Speaker: Prof. Ilana Horn, Professor, Math Education, Department of Teaching and Learning, Vanderbuilt University

Time: 4:30 – 6:00 p.m.

Location: Multipurpose room, First floor, Myles Standish Hall, Boston University, 610 Beacon Street (near the Kenmore Square T stop)

Title: Supporting Mathematics Teachers’ Sensemaking through Video Feedback: Diagnosing Classroom Troubles for More Productive Responses

Abstract: Mathematics educators exhort teachers to let students work together so they can engage ideas in their own language and support their sensemaking. Yet, when teachers hand math off to students, new social dynamics come into play. Adding to the complexity, high school students they are often very skilled at what aspects of their interactions they allow teachers to see, making it difficult for teachers to “read” the groups. In this study, the Project SIGMa research team partnered with experienced secondary mathematics teachers to design a video-based formative feedback (VFF) coaching cycle that supported new insights into the social dynamics that arise when students work on mathematics together. The teachers often developed new understandings about what was (and was not) working in their classrooms. By enhancing the information teachers have access to, our video feedback allowed teachers to make better diagnoses of classroom troubles and, in turn, identify more effective strategies for addressing them. In this talk, I give several examples of insights teachers developed through our video coaching process. I discuss what these examples tell us about experienced mathematics teachers’ learning and the implications for instructional coaching specifically and teacher education in general.

Note: Due to requirements of the hall at BU in which the colloquium will be held, all people who wish to attend must RSVP more than 24 hours ahead of time. Please use the google form,, to RSVP.

March 31, 2020

Canceled due to the coronavirus closures.

Speaker: Prof. Aris Winger, Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Georgia Gwinnett College

Title: Acknowledgement as a Requirement for Equity Work within the Mathematics Classroom

Abstract: This talk centers around Acknowledgement as a precursor to any form of equity work within the mathematics classroom. How can we foster equity, visibility, and validity within our classrooms if we, as teachers, have not done the work required to critically examine how our identities, privileges, and comfort continue to render some of our students invisible. In this talk, we will discuss what acknowledgment looks like, why it is necessary, why comfort is the enemy of progress, and why if we don't start consistently and critically questioning our work that those students who are invisible to us will remain so.

April 7, 2020

Canceled due to the coronavirus closures.

Speaker: Eli Luberoff, CEO and founder of Desmos

Title: Knocking Down Barriers With Technology

Abstract: One-to-one. Accessibility. Personalization. Internationalization. Low floor. High ceiling. What do these all have in common? Each is intended to make mathematics work for every student. Not just the confident students, not just the struggling students, every student. We'll explore the technology and techniques that can open doors, challenge the bored, empower the disempowered, enable the disabled, and turn every student into a mathematics student."

RSVP required. Please RSVP at:

May 5, 2020

Canceled due to the coronavirus closures.

Speaker: Prof. Deborah Loewenberg Ball, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and William H. Payne Collegiate Professor of Education, University of Michigan

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