Making it add up : an examination of the preparation of undergraduates to teach mathematics at CSUMB

Erin Barnes, California State University, Monterey Bay

Capstone Project (B.A.) Liberal Studies Department


Elementary teachers’ lack of conceptual knowledge negatively affects their confidence, beliefs and teaching ability. The implementation of earlier exposure to teaching mathematics in the undergraduate career can benefit the pre-service teacher’s future career by giving them the opportunity to examine their beliefs and attitudes towards math and gain confidence in their teaching. Interviews were conducted with teachers at California State University Monterey Bay who instruct Math 308 and Math 309 as well as a professor at the credential program. These interviews gave insight into the goals of the classes, the effectiveness of the classes and the teachers’ thoughts and opinions on a service-learning component in the classroom. Preliminary data analyses indicated that the curriculum and class structure help students experience math in a different way that develops a deeper understanding of the content. All teachers interviewed agree early exposure to teaching math is beneficial in developing student’s confidence and skills as a teacher.