Abstract Algebra and Secondary School Mathematics Connections as Discussed by Mathematicians and Mathematics Educators

  • Ashley L. SuominenEmail author
Part of the Research in Mathematics Education book series (RME)


Most certification programs in the USA for secondary mathematics require coursework in abstract algebra. Yet several researchers have shown that most undergraduate students struggle to understand even the most fundamental concepts of this course. Perhaps more troubling is that the participants in these studies were unable to articulate hardly any connections between abstract algebra and secondary school mathematics upon completion of the course. In this chapter, I elaborate on the results of a study involving interviews with 13 mathematicians and mathematics educators that research and teach abstract algebra. The aim of these interviews was to understand how field experts describe connections between abstract algebra and secondary mathematics. In my findings, I discuss the differences in the participants’ descriptions of connections as reflected by their experiences with the secondary curriculum and their individual conceptualizations of abstract algebra.


Abstract algebra Connections Mathematicians Mathematics educators Secondary school mathematics 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Liberal ArtsSavannah College of Art and DesignAtlantaUSA

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