OpenComps Update

With five weeks to go before beginning the written portion of my comprehensive exam, I recently met with my advisor to discuss gaps in my reading list. I think everybody has holes somewhere in their knowledge, but given my interests in research and practice we came up with additional readings focused on three areas: teacher learning, teacher beliefs, and cognitively guided instruction (CGI). I'm starting with teacher learning, which includes the following four articles:

Ball, D. L. (1988). Unlearning to teach mathematics. For the Learning of Mathematics, 8(1), 40–48. Retrieved from

Ball, D. L. (2008). Content knowledge for teaching: What makes it special ? Journal of Teacher Education, 59(5), 389–407. doi:10.1177/0022487108324554

Lampert, M. (2009). Learning teaching in, from, and for practice: What do we mean? Journal of Teacher Education, 61(1-2), 21–34. doi:10.1177/0022487109347321

Shulman, L. S. (1986). Those who understand: Knowledge growth in teaching. Educational Researcher, 15(2), 4–14. Retrieved from

Although I have a vague understanding of pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) and mathematical knowledge for teaching (MKT), I knew I needed to dig into Shulman's and Ball's thoughts to better understand their origins. In a way, it's a pretty good sign when the gaps you perceive yourself as having are more or less the ones your adivsor sees, too. There are places for life to contain wonderful surprises, but I don't think this needs to be one of them. Now, on to the reading!