Degree received: May 2010
Dissertation: The Effects of Using Diagramming as a Representational Technique on High School Students’ Achievement in Solving Math Word Problems”
I have been teaching high school mathematics since 2002 in a low performing urban school district. I decided to join the doctoral program in order to earn the highest degree in mathematics education. I am now better able to share the knowledge learned from the course with my students. Although some opportunities have opened up after I earned the degree, at this time I continue to teach at the same school with a determination to improve my students’ appreciation and understanding of mathematics. Some of my students have graduated as engineers and some others have joined the education stream as their career goals. I have started promoting my research through presentation in conferences and publication in mathematics journals. My research interest includes problem solving, mathematics in the nature, project-based learning, and connecting concepts in mathematics and science.
Degree received: May 2010
Dissertation: The Effect of Using a Problem/Project Based, Document Driven Unit of Instruction on High School Students’ Achievement in the Data Analysis Cluster of the HSPA and on their attitude towards Mathematics.
I retired last week and hope to become involved in working with pre-service teachers. My focus would be on using the graphing calculator properly in the classroom, probably combined with project based learning.
Sarah Quebec Fuentes
Degree received: May 2009
Dissertation: The Evolution of One Teacher’s Interactions with Students Working in Small Groups to Improve their Communication, Self-Regulating, and Problem-Solving Skills
Prior to entering the doctoral program, I taught middle school and high school mathematics for six years. My practical experiences as a teacher gave me a context to consider what I was learning in my courses and reflect on my practice. Since I continued to teach while I was in the program, one of my classes served as the site for my dissertation research on how teachers can interact with small groups to foster student communication.
I originally entered the program with the intention of remaining in the K-12 arena either as a classroom teacher or in a leadership role such as mathematics supervisor. As my time in the program progressed, I really enjoyed the research and writing aspects of the program and I decided to pursue a position at a university. Currently, I am an assistant professor of mathematics education in the College of Education at Texas Christian University (TCU). At TCU, I have had the opportunity to expand my research agenda with new projects, develop a M.Ed. in Mathematics Education which started in Fall 2011, and teach mathematics methods courses for elementary and middle/secondary majors.
Degree received: May 2008
Dissertation: The Effect of Visually Enhanced Instructional Unit on High School Calculus Students' Visualization Ability and their Understanding of the Limit Concept.
At the time I started the EdD program, I taught all levels of high school math, including AP Calc and AP Stat at Paramus HS.
Going into the program, I had an MS in Mathematics. The only course I had taken in education was an elective during my sophomore year (Education in the social context). I obtained my teaching certification through the Alternate Route Program and received the Dodge Fellowship Grant in the process. Teaching was both challenging and rewarding for me, and I decided to pursue a degree in Education. This is when I received information about the EdD program at Montclair. The specialization in Mathematics Pedagogy has in many ways enhanced my effectiveness as an educator and a teacher of mathematics. I continue to reflect on my daily practice. I often share my thoughts with students to help them think about their own learning and realize how mathematics fits in that picture.
I continue to teach all levels of high school math at Northern Valley Regional HS at Old Tappan, where I also am the math team advisor. I am actively involved in the school community, and I am fortunate to be in a district that encourages teacher interaction. There is much sharing of ideas through ongoing conversations in our math department about different approaches to teaching specifics. I believe that these conversations promote best practices that lead to progress in the long run.
When I started the program, my goal was to have a stronger grounding in pedagogy. The EdD in Mathematics Pedagogy at MSU provided me with much more than a strong grounding. I intend to stay in the classroom as I continue to make mathematics meaningful and rewarding for my students. I continue to learn as I teach, and I continue to share what I have learned with my colleagues.
Next Fall, both my children will be in college, and I hope to be able to devote more time to working with fellow teachers.
Dr. Janice-Lynn Shuhan
Degree received: May, 2006
Dissertation: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Secondary Math Class Activities: The Influence of Multiple Intelligences Inspired Tasks on Student Learning of Geometry Concepts © 2006
Before entering the doctoral program I taught secondary mathematics at Belleville high school for 30 years. I taught various levels of Algebra and Geometry (Honors, Academic, General and mixed-levels grades 9-12), as well as high school state proficiency topics during the period of the state’s HSPT/HSPA.
Montclair State University has provided me with a strong background in mathematics education, theater arts and music, administration, curriculum, counseling, and writing. Within the first decade after graduation from MSU, I have been the fortunate recipient of local, state, and national awards in teaching. Among these are: The Tandy Technology Scholar Outstanding Teacher Award, Stevens Institute of Technology Excellence in Teaching Award, Essex County Teacher of the Year, The (MSU) Alumni Citation, Best Actress in a Musical (ACT Awards of NJ), Best Choreographer of a Musical (Perry Awards), Poet of the Year, inductions into Who’s Who in the World Millennium Edition, Who’s Who in Women, Who’s Who Among Educator’s and Professionals, Who’s Who in American Education, and an honoree on the Wall of Tolerance.
After graduating from MSU, I published a book of poetry (Selections of the Heart and Soul), single poems to various publications, educational articles on the multiple intelligences in Analytic Teacher and New Jersey Mathematics Teacher, a performance website ( www.Janice-lynn.com ), and released a jazz vocal CD (Crazy In Love, by Janice Lynn) in 2007.
As math supervision was my initial goal following the doctoral program, the completion of doctoral program corresponded with the trend of discontinuation of all supervisory positions (in our district). However, I was strongly encouraged to apply for the Director of Curriculum/Assistant Superintendent position, but decided to pass with the intent of continuing the direct contact with students. My appointment as the Dean of Students and Math Lead Teacher last year (and currently) served me well as I had opportunity to guide and assist the math department, write curriculum for EveryDay Math grades 4 and 6, and reinvent a high school course (Algebra Basics Plus). The duties have ranged from various administrative disciplinary and counseling tasks, student supervision, tardiness and student credit appeals, Intervention and Referral meetings, data entry, organization and entry of EVVRS (violence) reports to the Dept of Education, facilitation of math PLCs, department meetings and planning, to designing a school-wide “Workplace Behavior Challenge” (WBC) initiative.
As part of the extracurricular program, I served as director and choreographer of a multiracial cast of some 50 students in a production of West Side Story. This was my 30th most rewarding year serving in these capacities.
Degree received: May 2005
Dissertation: A Mathematical Community of Inquiry in the High School Setting.
Ray Siegrist earned his doctorate in 2005, writing a dissertation about using a community of inquiry to teach high school mathematics. After teaching high school mathematics for thirty years, Ray was looking for a new challenge. Upon retiring from high school teaching in 2004, he began searching for a job to put his doctorate to use. At this time, Ray is an assistant professor at SUNY, College at Oneonta, preparing students to become mathematics teachers.
Degree received: January 2005
Dissertation: The Use Of The Graphing Calculator To Support The Learning Of The Function Concept By Students With Learning Disabilities In A Mathematics Classroom.
I began my career teaching mathematics at the secondary level in the early seventies and became a mathematics department supervisor six years later. My career has spanned more than three decades of changes in mathematics education including the introduction of the vision of teaching and learning mathematics developed by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). As I embraced this vision, I searched for ways to create a classroom where students were actively engaged in activities rich in mathematical content, a classroom that was a community of inquiry where the teacher was a partner as well as a mentor. That search brought me to Montclair State University, where a course examining the new NCTM Standards was offered. It was during that semester that I decided to return to school to earn a doctorate. During the next few years, professional and personal challenges caused me to delay my return to school. It was during this time period that the faculty at Montclair State was developing a doctoral program for mathematics teachers. Now a K-12 Mathematics Supervisor, I was sure the program was right for me.
My involvement in the doctoral program at Montclair State University helped me grow professionally, scholarly, and personally. When I completed the program I knew it was time to make a change and my experience at Montclair prepared me to enter a new phase of my life. Since retiring from the public school system, I have developed a good working relationship with the director of the Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education at Stevens Institute of Technology. Employed by them as a mathematics consultant, I visit various school districts sharing with other mathematics teachers a vision of teaching and learning consistent with the NCTM Standards.
In addition to my work as a consultant, I have worked as an adjunct at Montclair State University. The time spent with graduate students has been an extremely rewarding experience.
Deborah L. Ives
Degree received: August 2003
Dissertation: The Development of Seventh Graders' Conceptual Understanding of Geometry and Spatial Visualization Abilities Using Mathematical Representations with Dynamic Models.
Since earning my doctorate, I have been given opportunities to serve as a supervisor of mathematics, a curriculum specialist, teacher, and a facilitator of an Aerospace, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (A-STEM) program in NJ public schools. Some of the opportunities in addition to my school-based professional responsibilities that came my way since earning the doctorate:
- Thirteen/WNET New York March 2009 - present: Advisor for Educational Multimedia Project, Get the Math!, designed to help middle and high school students taking Algebra I appreciate its importance and usefulness. (I was recommended by NCTM to PBS.)
- State of New Jersey, Department of Education 2009: NJ Math Panel 2008 – 2009: SRA (Special Review Assessment) Advisory Council Member 2008: Standards Clarification Project Phase II: NJ Steps Algebra I, Geometry,
- Association of Math Teachers of New Jersey 2008-2010: Co-Chair, Speaker for “Special Education/Mathematics: Preparing for State Standards and Assessment K-12” 2005-2006: President of AMTNJ
- National Council of Teachers of Mathematics 2006: Co-Chair, NCTM Eastern Regional Conference, Atlantic City, NJ 2005: New Jersey State Delegate: NCTM Annual, Anaheim, CA
- Grant Writing 2006: Wrote and secured New Jersey State Systemic Initiative (NJ SSI) Professional Development Grant for Standards-based Mathematics - awarded $20,000 for West Milford Public Schools
I believe that the education and experience I received at MSU in the doctoral program prepared me for the contributions to education that I have made since. These opportunities, I believe, are as a direct result of engaging in the research and study of pedagogy and mathematics with the faculty and students at the college.