Mar 29 2018 Posted: 15:35 IST

The 8th Annual BA Mathematics and Education Final-year Symposium was held Tuesday last at NUI Galway.  The Symposium was organised by students of the NUI Galway concurrent teacher education degree programme, the BA Mathematics and Education (BME).  Introduced in 2008, the BME programme graduates qualified second-level teachers of mathematics and applied mathematics, who are also fully qualified mathematicians.

This event is a showcase of research and findings in the area of mathematical education by the fourth year students and we were very fortunate to have Prof. John O’Donoghue deliver this year’s keynote address, “Reflections on Mathematics Education and mathematics teaching based on the personal journey of an accidental teacher”.  Prof. O’Donoghue is Emeritus Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at the University of Limerick and a pioneer of Mathematics Education in Ireland. Having completed his PhD with Professor Avi Bajpai, OBE, University of Loughborough Prof. O’Donoghue has served as the founding Director of the Mathematics Learning Centre and Director of the National Centre for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching and Learning (NCE-MSTL) at UL, as well as previously Head of Mathematics, Thomond College of Education.

Conor McCarthy

Three BME students were selected by their classmates to present on the day.  Conor McCarthys presentation was titled “Can I use group-work in the mathematics classroom to improve my students’ critical thinking?” Mark Foy presentation was “How the layout and atmosphere of the classroom with a particular emphasis on group work increases the children’s academic success?”. The third BME student to present was Conor Cuddihy, “How the layout am atmosphere of the classroom with a particular emphasis on group work increases the children’s academic success?”  There were also presentations from students of Education at GMIT Letterfrack and St Angela's College, Sligo – with Gary Weir and Sarah Moloney presenting on their final year projects.

The Irish Mathematical Trust provided funding towards hosting the symposium and Dr Aisling McCluskey presented on their Maths Circles initiative.

The well attended event brought together students from third and fourth year on the BME, academic staff from NUIG School of Education, School of Mathematics, Applied Mathematics and Statistics, as well as staff from GMIT Letterfrack and St Angela’s College Sligo, Teaching Council and local post-primary Mathematics teachers.


Jim Lenaghan

School of Education

Follow @edtechne


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