Why Learn Maths? (Bedford Way Papers)

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9780854736171: Why Learn Maths? (Bedford Way Papers)
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Across the globe mathematics has a privileged place in the school curriculum, which we tend to take for granted. But are all the arguments that have been put forward in its defence equally sound? Do they justify its status as a compulsory subject? What priority should it have in the curriculum compared with other subjects? The contributors to this book explore these questions and their historical background. They investigate the varied aims of learning and teaching mathematics, and to what extent the discipline deserves the high curricular status it has traditionally enjoyed. The place of mathematics in the curriculum is an issue for the citizen, not only for the mathematics specialist. The contributors include leading writers in the field of mathematics education, school improvement, history of education and philosophy of education. Their views represent perspectives from outside the world of mathematics education as well as from within mathematics education itself. There is sharp disagreement among them about the future of compulsory mathematics at secondary level, with some believing it should become a voluntary activity in the early secondary years and others favouring its compulsory status until school-leaving age.

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John White is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy of Education at the Institute of Education, University of London.

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A book that dares to question the necessity of all pupils studying mathematics to 16. -- Tim Rowland, Lecturer in Mathematics, University of Cambridge Times Educational Supplement

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