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ERIC Number: EJ907762
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 19
ISSN: ISSN-1033-2170
(Fish) Food for Thought: Authority Shifts in the Interaction between Mathematics and Reality
Peled, Irit
Mathematics Education Research Journal, v22 n2 p108-120 2010
This theoretical paper explores the decision-making process involved in modelling and mathematizing situations during problem solving. Specifically, it focuses on the authority behind these choices (i.e., what or who determines the chosen mathematical models). We show that different types of situations involve different sources of authority, thereby creating different degrees of freedom for the problem solver engaged in the modelling process. It also means that mathematics plays different roles in these problems and situations. This epistemological analysis on the meaning of modelling implies that we should reconsider the mathematical status of realistic solutions and raises questions on the validity of some traditional choices of mathematical models and their use in diagnosing children's conceptions. It also suggests constructing modelling tasks by choosing a certain variety of situations that might lead to a better understanding of the roles of mathematics. (Contains 1 table and 2 figures.)
Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia. GPO Box 2747, Adelaide SA 5001, Australia. Tel: +61-8-8363-0288; Fax: +61-8-8362-9288; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A