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ERIC Number: EJ889861
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-May
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 3
ISSN: ISSN-0025-5785
A Lakatosian Encounter
Chick, Helen
Mathematics Teaching, n218 p3-9 May 2010
There is much to be learned and pondered by reading "Proofs and Refutations," by Imre Lakatos. It highlights the importance of mathematical definitions, and how definitions evolve to capture the essence of the object they are defining. It also provides an exhilarating encounter with the ups and downs of the mathematical reasoning process, where conjectures are proposed, countered, and justified. The main part of the book has its mathematical home in the domain of three-dimensional geometry, and Lakatos uses the literary device of presenting, in script form, the dialogue of a cast of Greek-letter-named characters as they debate definitions, proofs, and counterexamples in a classroom. In this article, the author uses Lakatos' methods to explain how his class might have explored a probability game. (Contains 1 note.)
Association of Teachers of Mathematics. Unit 7 Prime Industrial Park, Shaftesbury Street, Derby, DE23 8YB, UK. Tel: +44-1332-346599; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A