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Mathematical problem solving
Practical paradigm
Issue Date: 
Office of Education Research, National Institute of Education, Singapore
Toh, T. L., Tay, E. G., Leong, Y. H., Quek, K. S., Toh, P. C., Jaguthsing Dindyal, & Ho, F. H. (2020). Mathematical problem solving for everyone: INfusion and Diffusion (Report No. OER 22/12 TTL). National Institute of Education (Singapore), Office of Education Research.
This research project is an attempt to realise the ideals of mathematical problem solving, which is at the heart of the Singapore mathematics curriculum in the daily practices of mainstream mathematics classrooms. This work builds on the foundation of M-ProSE (OER 32/08 TTL) to diffuse the findings to the mainstream school curriculum. Our work involves three steps: (1) initialisation of problem solving as an essential part of the mathematics curriculum in a school at the foundational year; (2) infusion of problem solving as an embedded regular curricular and pedagogical practice across all year levels in the school, and (3) diffusion of this innovation from this school to the full range of schools in Singapore. In each of the above steps, we take a complex systems approach and include curriculum, instructional practices, assessment and teacher professional development in our overall design research process. Our current project builds upon the initial foundation of MProSE to scale out (infuse) and scale up (diffuse) the innovation to mainstream schools in Singapore, hence the project is named MInD. With the experience and data collected from MProSE research school, the design needs to be re-adjusted in order for problem solving to be diffused throughout the mainstream schools. The importance and relevance of this research project to schools is readily observed by the schools' responses: To the researchers' pleasant surprise, four mainstream schools readily expressed their commitment to participate in this research as the school leaders see the relevance of this project to their school curriculum. Further, the Principal of MProSE research school expressed his interest to get his school involved for the infusion phase(step (2)) of the research. The research team of MInD consists of the original researchers from MProSE and two more new team members. The entire team consists of expertise from different fields: mathematicians, mathematics educator, educational psychologist, curriculum specialist, senior teacher, a school principal (who is also a mathematician), an expert of change management and leadership studies, a senior MOE curriculum specialist.
Note: Restricted to NIE Staff.
Project number: 
OER 22/12 TTL
Grant ID: 
Education Research Funding Programme (ERFP)
Funding Agency: 
Ministry of Education, Singapore
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