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ERIC Number: ED555033
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 270
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: 978-1-3032-2634-2
An Archaeological/Genealogical Historical Analysis of The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' Standards Documents
Bullock, Erika Catherine
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Georgia State University
Since the mid-20th century in the United States, there have been several reform movements within mathematics education; each movement has been subject to its own unique socio-cultural and -political forces. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' (NCTM) Standards documents--"Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics" (1989), "Professional Standards for Teaching Mathematics" (1991), "Assessment Standards for School Mathematics" (1995), and "Principles and Standards for School Mathematics" (2000)--not only represent the most recent of these reform movements but also the most enduring. Collectively, these documents have formed a discourse (cf. Foucault, 1969/1972)--"Standards"-based mathematics education--that has guided mathematics education through the 1990s and beyond. This study uses Foucaultian archaeological and genealogical methods (cf. Foucault, 1969/1972, 1975/1995) to explore "Standards"-based mathematics education as a "discursive formation" (Foucault, 1969/1972) and the complex power relations (cf. Foucault, 1976/1990) that made it possible for the formation to become The discourse of school mathematics, making others impossible. Data for the exploration includes the "Standards" documents, earlier histories of the NCTM Standards moment, scholarly and policy literature surrounding the NCTM documents, and oral history interviews with several of the writers of the NCTM documents. The study presents a historical narrative of mathematics education in the 20th century that both contextualizes "Standards"-based mathematics education and problematizes NCTM's efforts; a key focus is the strategy that NCTM deployed to maintain the viability of "Standards"-based mathematics education as a discourse. Foucault's (1984) "author function" is used to address the ways that the writers, externalities, and NCTM as an organization "authored" the "Standards" documents. The study concludes arguing that perpetuating the discursive formation of "Standards"-based mathematics education is neither good nor bad but only dangerous; therefore, it requires mathematics educators to maintain a sense of pessimistic activism related to present and future reform efforts (cf. Foucault, 1983/1997). [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A