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Improving mathematical learning in Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence through problem posing: An integrative review

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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages38
JournalCurriculum Journal
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2019


The purpose of this paper is to explore the importance of problem posing in learning mathematics at the compulsory education level. Despite acknowledging that children have a natural disposition to pose questions, no curricular provision currently exists for the conceptualisation and operationalisation of mathematical problem posing within Scotland's Curriculum for Excellence. In order to provide evidence to support any curricular change, integrative systematic review and narrative synthesis of quantitative and qualitative studies was conducted. Results suggest that problem posing can offer an array of valuable didactic benefits for pupils such as deeper conceptual knowledge, enhanced problem‐solving skills and an increase in the enjoyment of mathematics. Evidence from the qualitative synthesis provides some tentative guidance on considerations regarding the integration of problem posing to the curriculum. This study argues that in order to improve future learning experiences, mathematical problem posing should be embedded in all Scottish classrooms. Furthermore, problem posing is determined to be effective in the pedagogical development of prospective primary and secondary mathematics practitioners.

    Research areas

  • practitioner researcher, mathematical problem posing, curricular policy, Scotland, teacher education, integrative review

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