Date of Graduation

Spring 2017


Master of Science in Education in Secondary Education in Mathematics



Committee Chair

Kurt Killion


authentic mathematical discourse, Common Core, Eight Standards for Mathematical Practice, high school mathematics classroom

Subject Categories

Science and Mathematics Education


The purpose of this study is to gain insight into the successes and challenges a teacher faces when implementing authentic mathematical discourse in a high school mathematics classroom. Nine lessons were implemented that emphasized student engagement in Common Core Mathematics Practice Three (MP3) (construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.) This was a qualitative action research study that took place in a Geometry classroom with 16 9th-11th grade students. Personal journal entries were recorded by the teacher-researcher after each lesson which included detailed summaries of the lesson and reflections on instances of students engaging in MP3 as well as observed challenges that hindered students' engagement in MP3. Observational data from a building-level instructional coach and student artifacts were also collected. Data showed that the following three factors were prominent in leading to student engagement in MP3: 1) transferring responsibility from the teacher to students; 2) investing into lesson plans, time management, class structure, and relationships with students; and 3) establishing a classroom culture of safety, respect, and high expectations. The results of the study indicated that high school mathematics students are capable of engaging in authentic mathematical discourse when teachers intentionally consider these three factors and implement lessons that provide opportunities and encourage students to engage in MP3.


© Whitney Ann Evans

Open Access