Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 331–368 | Cite as

Student teachers’ mathematics attitudes, authentic investigations and use of metacognitive tools

  • Karoline Afamasaga-Fuata’i
  • Lumaava Sooaemalelagi


Based on findings from a semester-long study, this article examines the development of Samoan prospective teachers’ mathematical understandings and mathematics attitudes when investigating authentic contexts and applying working mathematically processes, mental computations and problem-solving strategies to find solutions of problems. The prospective teachers had enrolled for the second time (having failed their first attempt), in the first-year mathematics methods course of a 2-year Diploma of Education (Primary) programme. The group also included those enrolled in the Diploma of Education (Early Childhood and Special Needs) programmes, who recognizing their own limited understanding of mathematics would ordinarily shy away from opportunities for improvement. Given the negative mathematical and learning experiences, this group was ideal to engage in innovative and creative approaches that would make mathematics learning more meaningful and contextual in a Samoan environment. Only data from the attitudinal questionnaires and interviews are presented in this article. Main findings have implications for teaching and learning mathematics.


Attitudinal change Authentic investigation Metacognitive tools (concept maps and vee diagrams) Working mathematically Problem-solving strategies 



This study was funded by a grant from the National University of Samoa Research Fund.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karoline Afamasaga-Fuata’i
    • 1
  • Lumaava Sooaemalelagi
    • 2
  1. 1.Mathematics and Statistics Department, Faculty of ScienceNational University of SamoaApiaSamoa
  2. 2.Faculty of EducationNational University of SamoaApiaSamoa

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