Issues in secondary mathematics

Professor Hlas
hlascs (@)
Drop-in times

What mathematics really consists of is problems and solutions —Paul Halmos

Course Information

An integrated study of mathematical topics taught in grades 4-12 with a focus on pedagogical content knowledge. Topics include: number and operations, algebra, geometry, probability, statistics, and other issues relevant to secondary mathematics.

More course information is posted on Canvas.

Course learning outcomes include


Research background


It is important to communicate clearly and indicate where ideas come from. On every assignment, the preservice teacher starts at zero then earns "math teaching points" (MTP) for demonstration of mathematical thinking related to teaching (commonly called "pedagogical content knowledge"). If any concerns arise regarding grading, contact the instructor in a timely manner.

Weekly writing assignments (12 × 8 MTP)

There will be readings for each week's topic. Most of these weeks require a written assignment that utilizes the readings from the week.

Literature review (18 MTP)

Preservice teachers will pick a topic in mathematics education, read relevant research on the topic, and report their findings.

Formative assessment probe (24 MTP)

Preservice teachers will develop formative assessment probes during class. Individually, test one of these probes with target students and discuss implications of the student data.

Final presentation (16 MTP)

Preservice teachers will present their literature review or the results of their formative assessment probe test to the class during the final exam time.

Fine print

Email is the best way to reach me. I typically respond within 24 hours, but do not check email in the evenings or on Saturdays due to family commitments.

Attendance A record of attendance is required by the University to maintain accurate class rosters. Attendance is not graded but poor attendance may impact participation in group activities.

Absences If you are absent, please check the course schedule then meet with me (drop-in hours, Zoom, or email) so I can make sure you are caught up. Authorized absences (school functions, emergencies or illness) may be made up for full credit. Other absences may be completed early for full credit, or late for 90% credit. Late work is expected to be completed within two weeks of the original due date or by the last day of classes, whichever occurs first.

Entry-level switching The Department of Mathematics allows students within entry-level mathematics courses (i.e., 010, 020, 104, 109, 112, 114, or 246) to move up to a higher numbered course during the first two weeks of a semester or move down during the first three weeks. Please contact the instructor for more details.


Student Accommodations Any student who has a disability and is in need of classroom accommodations should contact the instructor and the Services for Students with Disabilities Office in Centennial Hall 2106 at the beginning of the semester.

Academic Integrity Any academic misconduct in this course will be submitted to the Dean of Students.

Mandatory Reporter As a Wisconsin State employee, the instructor is obligated to report any crimes to the Dean of Students, including claims of sexual harassment or sexual assault. The Dean of Students office may reach out to you to offer resources and support.

Community As members of this class we are members of a learning community that values all people with all backgrounds. Please remember that our words and actions affect everyone within our community and remember a little positivity can go a long way.