ERIC Number: ED473654
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2003
The Epistemology of JPFs: When Is Research in Mathematics Education Valid, for Whom, and under What Circumstances?
How can we conduct research when circumstances do not fit the requirements of formal research methods? What does it mean to say that results of research are valid and robust? What are the real products of research anyway? The term research has been appropriated in education by people with a vested interest in their own formalized methods and expertise. Yet formal education research has had very little impact on the practice of individuals, certainly in relation to the amount of moment spent. What is needed is an approach to research which enables ordinary practitioners to make sensible decisions about their own practice, informed where possible by indications of possibilities arising from the work of colleagues. An approach which meets these needs can be constructed based on the natural acts of just plain folks, by addressing the questions of the title. This approach draws upon traditions in which assertions are considered to be made for particular people at a particular time in a particular place, rather than having some objective validity, and in which assertions are merely signals or stimuli to make distinctions previously not made. Furthermore, validity is a matter of testing things out in past, present, and future experience, not one of accepting what someone else says because they claim to have proved it in some other context. (Author)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A