Faculty-led Inquiry into Reflective and Scholarly Teaching (FIRST)


Date of this Version


Document Type



Course portfolio developed as part of the UNL Peer Review of Teaching Project (peerreview.unl.edu)

Copyright (c) 2015 Lorraine Males


The goal of my peer review portfolio was to better understand how to improve students' learning of how to teach secondary mathematics in reform-oriented ways. Most students that pursue admission into the Secondary Mathematics Teacher Education Program have little to no experience learning mathematics in reform-oriented ways. These preservice teachers (PSTs) were “successful” in mathematics courses in middle and high school, most of them taking honors or accelerated courses. However, many of these PSTs did not have opportunities to engage as active participants in their own learning and develop complex cognitive skills and processes, the focus of reform-oriented instruction. This presents a few problems. First, it is quite hard for a PST to value teaching that is different from what he or she experienced when what he or she experienced proved to be not only conducive to learning, but also quite enjoyable. Second, for PSTs that develop a desire to teach in reform-oriented ways, they often lack the conceptual understanding or problem-solving skills that are needed to feel confident in their abilities to teach in this way.