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Japanese and American Teachers' Evaluations of Videotaped Mathematics Lessons

Jennifer K. Jacobs and Eiji Morita
Journal for Research in Mathematics Education
Vol. 33, No. 3 (May, 2002), pp. 154-175
DOI: 10.2307/749723
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/749723
Page Count: 22
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Japanese and American Teachers' Evaluations of Videotaped Mathematics Lessons
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Abstract

This article describes a novel assessment method used to examine Japanese and American teachers' ideas about what constitutes effective mathematics pedagogy. Forty American and 40 Japanese teachers independently evaluated either an American or Japanese mathematics lesson captured on videotape. Their comments were classified into over 1600 idea units, which were then sorted into a hierarchy of categories derived from the data. Next, the authors hypothesized underlying ideal instructional scripts that could explain the patterns of responses. Whereas the U. S. teachers were supportive of both traditional and nontraditional elementary school mathematics instruction and had different scripts for the two lessons, the Japanese teachers had only one ideal lesson script that was closely tied to typical Japanese mathematics instruction. The findings suggest that U. S. teachers may have more culturally sanctioned options for teaching mathematics; however, Japanese teachers may have a more detailed and widely shared theory about how to teach effectively.

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