Theories of learning mathematics

Lesh, Richard A., Sriraman, Bharath, & English, Lyn D. (2014) Theories of learning mathematics. In Lerman, Stephen (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Mathematics Education. Springer. (In Press)

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According to Karl Popper, widely regarded as one of the greatest philosophers of science in the 20th century, falsifiability is the primary characteristic that distinguishes scientific theories from ideologies – or dogma. For example, for people who argue that schools should treat creationism as a scientific theory, comparable to modern theories of evolution, advocates of creationism would need to become engaged in the generation of falsifiable hypothesis, and would need to abandon the practice of discouraging questioning and inquiry. Ironically, scientific theories themselves are accepted or rejected based on a principle that might be called survival of the fittest. So, for healthy theories on development to occur, four Darwinian functions should function:

(a) variation – avoid orthodoxy and encourage divergent thinking, (b) selection – submit all assumptions and innovations to rigorous testing, (c) diffusion – encourage the shareability of new and/or viable ways of thinking, and (d) accumulation – encourage the reuseability of viable aspects of productive innovations.

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ID Code: 57628
Item Type: Reference Entry
Keywords: Complexity, Learning Theories, Models and Modeling, Models versus Theories, Theories of mathematics education
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200) > Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development (130202)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Teacher Education & Leadership
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Springer
Deposited On: 26 Feb 2013 01:35
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2016 13:33

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