Date of Graduation

Spring 2023


Master of Science in Education in Secondary Education in Mathematics



Committee Chair

Patrick Sullivan


This study explored students’ mathematical reasoning skills and offered supports to advance them through a collaborative argumentation framework in a college intermediate algebra class. The goals of this study were to make observations about student reasoning, identify specific actions to address those observations, and document student growth in reasoning as a result of those actions. An iterative analysis, mixed method study was conducted in which the researcher engaged students in responding to questions that required conceptual understandings using a collaborative argumentation framework as a tool to identify and code components of their responses—claim, evidence, and reasoning. After coding and analyzing students’ responses and evaluating themes from the researcher’s observations, the results increased the researcher’s understandings of students’ reasoning and indicated an advancement in conceptual understandings, pattern exploration strategies, and written mathematical arguments. By following the instructional guidelines and workshops of the collaborative argumentation framework, the frequency of reasoning and quality of evidence in students’ responses increased. Additionally, observations indicated advancements from procedural to conceptual understandings, recognizing and systematically exploring patterns, and communicating arguments in a cohesive manner. The researcher also identified challenges of getting students to use generalized reasoning strategies and creating enough class time for effective and thorough feedback and reflection.


collaborative argumentation, claim, evidence, reasoning, conceptual understanding

Subject Categories

Algebra | Curriculum and Instruction | Educational Methods | Higher Education | Science and Mathematics Education | Secondary Education


© Rachel Kay Heili

Open Access