Students in an elementary teacher preparation program at a Hispanic Serving Institution in deep South Texas were asked to solve non-routine, problem-solving activities. They were administered five tasks during one semester, as part of a mathematics methods course. Two experienced raters assessed the student’s solutions to the non-routine problem-solving mathematical task using a mathematics understanding rubric that scores the Procedural Fluency (PF), Conceptual Understanding (CU), and Problem Solving/Strategic Competency (PS/SC). The research question was: What are the changes in procedural fluency, conceptual understanding, and problem solving-Strategic Competency in elementary preservice teachers after engaging in a series of non-routine problem-solving tasks? This is an ongoing research project, and preliminary results indicated that the teacher’s candidates made improvements in each of the three measurements, demonstrating that they are able to successfully use procedures, and have adequate conceptual knowledge for problem solving.
Aguilar, Jair J. and Telese, James A., "Mathematics Understanding of Elementary Pre-Service Teachers: The Analysis of their Procedural-Fluency, Conceptual-Understanding, and Problem-Solving Strategies" (2018). Teaching and Learning Faculty Publications and Presentations. 27.
Mathematics Teaching Research Journal