The purpose of this study is to investigate the following questions: What factors leads to success in mathematics, and how can these success factors and qualities be described? Will the teacher’s education and pedagogical praxis have an impact on good learning results? We report results from a case-control association study on among high achievement classes in mathematics in Norway. The data were collected from matched pairs of schools, paired on the basis of location and socioeconomic status. The questionnaire was first distributed to teachers in 38 Norwegian secondary schools at grade 9, which have had repeated success in the annual KappAbel competition in mathematics. Subsequently, 38 teachers at schools without success were contacted, and answered the same questionnaire. The main findings of the study are the following: The formal academic competence of the teacher is the best predictor for good results. Moreover, the pedagogical profile is reason oriented, where students are challenged to evaluate and substantiate their arguments, and spreadsheet is used for exploration and computation.
Thorvaldsen, Steinar and Vavik, Lars
"Foundations for success in mathematical competitions: A study of best praxis in lower secondary schools in Norway,"
The Mathematics Enthusiast: Vol. 9
, Article 7.
Available at: http://scholarworks.umt.edu/tme/vol9/iss3/7