Preparing primary teachers in the United States
Balancing selection and preparation
The recent movement in the United States toward common (national) mathematics standards brings to the fore issues of implementation which includes how teachers are prepared to teach. The Teacher Education and Development Study in Mathematics (TEDS-M) provide an international context for an in depth analysis of the US primary future teachers’ TEDS-M results. The US education system is decentralized with many aspects controlled by the states and many other aspects controlled by over 16,000 local school districts. Consequently, there is great variation in what secondary mathematics individuals have had before entering teacher preparation. In addition, as certification is a state regulation, teacher preparation programs also differ in what is provided to prospective teachers. Analyses reveal significant relationship between both of these to the mathematics content knowledge and mathematics pedagogical content knowledge of US future primary teachers. A two-stage hierarchical model is used to explore the relative contribution of these two factors.