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Maths in FE

Discussion in 'Further Education' started by everidge1, Jul 5, 2015.

  1. Hi FE teachers

    I am doing my research for my MA into maths teaching in FE. If anyone has any comments to post I would be really grateful so I can incorporate your views into my findings. My research question is:

    Does the level of subject specific knowledge affect your confidence in teaching different curriculum levels of mathematics/numeracy?

    In a nutshell - if you are teaching maths in FE, do you find that the more qualified in maths you are helps you teach the subject - maybe at higher levels such as GCSE higher or even A level, or maybe hinders you at lower levels such as Entry 1 and 2, and vice versa - you feel your lack of maths specific qualifications helps you teaching maths in FE. If you could post some opinions/comments I would be really grateful - please state in your replies if you are in FE or not. All posts will be treated anonymously and the more honest you are, the better!

    Thanks

    Janet
     
  2. selbelle

    selbelle New commenter

    I have a BSc and MSc in Maths + a PGCE. I enjoy teaching A level Maths teaching and also problem solving . I have found that this is not necessarily true for all my colleagues. Not wishing to generalise but there are some very good teachers who have come from science/pe/business etc teaching background
    and become maths teachers and prefer to teach up to GCSE .
     
  3. TCSC47

    TCSC47 Star commenter

    Retired engineer / scientist, secondary and FE teacher. Maths qualified to degree level and used it in anger in the "real" world. Very confident to teach maths to level 4 or so.However, my practical maths usage in the "real" world probably hinders my effectiveness as a teacher. So much of school maths is simply material that can be examined. You have to treat so much of the subject as preparing children for the hidden intelligence test that will be used by future courses and employers to gauge their ability.

    Maths can be so much fun if we were allowed to treat it as such.

    But I would say the biggest problem in teaching maths is that there is little standing still. To cover the syllabus the teacher is not allowed to dwell on any particular topic for very long. Anybody who misses a particular concept doesn't get much, if any, chance to catch up. At that point they are lost to maths pretty much for ever more. Hence the general populace has the lowest opinion of maths of all the education subjects. The exceptions being the students where every thing fell into place first time.

    The Labour Gov introduced a scheme and funding to give one to one maths and/or English teaching to those who missed a key point so they could get back up to speed. The Coalition dumped it of course.
     

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