Mathematical Education and Contemporary Theory 3

Eva Jablonka & Christer Bergsten

Eva Jablonka - King’s College London & Christer Bergsten - Linköping University

The role of digital tools in practices of surveillance in mathematics education.

Even if not widespread, we assume that the use of a range of digital tools for monitoring and recording student performances (such as clickers, smartpens, or multiplayer online games) has a significance that we think is worth analysing. In drawing on Foucault’s idea of surveillance, we intend to investigate how these tools constitute the student as a subject of communication or an object of information and operate as technologies that shape the ways in which students are able to think about themselves as learners of mathematics. We shall explore the implicated pedagogic relationships in terms of evaluation of performance (such as personalised or automatised, private or public) and the criteria for accomplishment (such as providing written problem solutions, uttering explanations, clicking alternative answers). For our analysis, we attempt to develop Bernstein’s characterisation of visible and invisible pedagogies in relation to different surveillance practices. As method of analysis we will conduct comparisons with similar practices using non-digital tools (e.g. mini whiteboards) based on the discourses advocating the use of those tools.

Christer Bergsten is Emeritus Professor of Mathematics Education at Linköping University, Sweden. My publications have focussed on a range of issues in teacher education, using technology in mathematics teaching, semiotics, university mathematics education including the transition from secondary school to university, and theoretical approaches to research. I have also been involved in the set up and development of Swedish, Nordic and European mathematics education research societies.

Eva Jablonka is Professor of Mathematics Education at Kings College London. My research interests include the study of school mathematics curricula at macro and micro levels (in particular mathematical modelling and mathematical literacy), the sociology of mathematics, mathematics education and language, cross-cultural comparative studies of mathematics education, and students in transition between different sectors of mathematics education with a focus on the emerging achievement disparities related to these transitions. I am also interested in the role of theorizing in mathematics education, in particular in consolidating, integrating and further developing sociological and discourse-analytic approaches.