A Small-Scale Study on Bruneian Secondary School Teachers’ Perception of Mathematics Learning
It is widely accepted that the way teachers perceive mathematics will impact on the nature of teaching, assessment and thus learning that students experience (Wyatt-Smith, 1995). At the same time, educators around the world acknowledged the importance of mathematical thinking, communication and assessment in the teaching and learning of mathematics. The emphasis on mathematical thinking and communication makes teachers wonder how students should be assessed in order to determine their understanding. A small-scale study was conducted around June/July, 2008, where student-teachers (with major and minor in mathematics) were sent to schools for a “teaching assistantship” programme. They were exposed to the normal routine of teachers at school and learning environment while they observed and assisted teachers in classrooms around Brunei for six weeks. The student-teachers distributed questionnaires to all mathematics teachers at the secondary school they were based and 300 copies were returned. The survey questionnaires’ purpose was to determine teachers’ perception on mathematical thinking, communication and assessment assessment in general and alternative assessment in particular. The result and discussion that follows focus on teachers’ perception of the importance of mathematical thinking, communication and assessment in mathematics classroom. The difference between male and female teachers’ perceptions were also investigated.
Keywords: Mathematics Learning, Mathematics Assessment, Mathematical Thinking, Communication in Mathematics
Dr. Madihah Khalid
Lecturer, Department of Science and Mathematics Education, Universiti Brunei Darussalam