Frederick Peck

PhD Candidate and Ambassador, Curriculum & Instruction - Math

Biography

I am a PhD Candidate in Curriculum and Instruction (C&I) with a focus on Math Education, and am serving as an Ambassador for the C&I Math/Science doctoral program.

Broadly, I am interested in the ways that cognition gets distributed in math classrooms and how artifacts – such as models, tools, representations, and symbol systems – mediate learning in mathematics. What this means is that I believe cognition is not something that happens “in the head”, but rather is distributed across resources in the environment. As Edwin Hutchins explains, “humans create their cognitive powers in part by creating the environments in which they exercise those powers.” I’m interested in the consequences of this perspective for high-school mathematics. To study these consequences, I conduct classroom design experiments in high schools. My most-recent study took place in an Algebra I classroom and explored how students develop a robust understanding of slope.

My philosophy on teaching stems from my philosophy of mathematics, which is that mathematics is a human activity rather than a set of facts, skills or concepts to be acquired. This belief guides all of my courses whether they are math classes or classes for math teachers.

 

 

 

Awards & Honors

Awards & Fellowships

  • Chancellor’s fellow, University of Colorado, 2011-2013

Research

Research

Broadly, I am interested in the ways that cognition gets distributed in math classrooms and how artifacts – such as models, tools, representations, and symbol systems – mediate learning in mathematics. What this means is that I believe cognition is not something that happens “in the head,” but rather is distributed across resources in the environment. As Edwin Hutchins explains, “Humans create their cognitive powers in part by creating the environments in which they exercise those powers.” I’m interested in the consequences of this perspective for high-school mathematics. To study these consequences, I conduct classroom design experiments in high schools. My most-recent study took place in an Algebra I classroom and explored how students develop a robust understanding of slope.

I am also a Research Assistant on two projects in the School of Education. One project is focused on exploring the pathways through which students become (or do not become) engineers. The other is a collaboration with teachers in Denver Public Schools in which we are exploring how measurements of student growth can be made more meaningful for teachers while still fulfilling accountability requirements.

Teaching

Teaching Philosophy & Courses Taught

My philosophy on teaching stems from my philosophy of mathematics, which is that mathematics is a human activity rather than a set of facts, skills or concepts to be acquired. This belief guides all of my courses whether they are math classes or classes for math teachers.

Courses taught:

  • High school mathematics (including algebra I, IB math, and AP calculus)
  • Summer quantitative course for incoming PhD students in the School of Education

Service & Outreach

Service & Outreach

  • Advisory board for PhET interactive simulations
  • Reviewer for:
    • Journal for Research in Mathematics Education (JRME);
    • Realistic Mathematics Education conference (RME);
    • International Conference on the Learning Sciences (ICLS);
    • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Research conference
  • Facilitator, Math on the “planes” workshop (June 2013 and Feb 2014)
  • Student ambassador for the C&I Math/Science doctoral program

Selected Publications

Selected Presentations & Publications (See CV for complete list of publications)

Peck, F. & Matassa M. (in review). The power of preformal productions: A case study involving fractions.

Migozuchi, T., Peck, F., & Matassa, M. (2013). Developing robust understandings of slope. Elementary mathematics teaching today, 511 (Journal published in Japan). 31-32.

Peck, F. (2013). How does reinvention get distributed? Presented at the Fourth International RME Conference (RME 4, Boulder CO)

Peck, F. (2013). Beyond rise-over-run: Contexts, representations, and a learning trajectory for slope. Presented at the fourth international RME conference (RME 4, Boulder CO)

Peck, F. (2013). “I think it’s a hundred and fifteen dollars”: How mathematical activity and the social setting are mutually informing and co-constitutive. Poster presented at the 2013 NCTM research conference (Denver, CO)

Peck F. & Matassa M. (2012). Ratio and rate: Towards a unified framework. Poster presented at the 12th International Conference on Mathematics Education (ICME’12, Seoul, South Korea)

Matassa, M. & Peck, F. (2012). Rise over run or rate of change? Exploring and expanding student understanding of slope in Algebra I. Proceedings of the 12th International Congress on Mathematics Education. Seoul, Korea. 7440-7445.