Sent at the request of Birgit Pepin and Keith Jones.
JMTE Special Issue- Open Call "Mathematics Teachers as Partners in Task Design"

The recent Oxford Conference on the ICMI Study 22 'Task Design in Mathematics Education' (Margolinas 2013) highlighted that "the communities involved in task design are naturally overlapping and diverse" and that such design "can involve designers, professional mathematicians, teacher educators, teachers, researchers, learners, authors, publishers and manufacturers, or combinations of these" (ICMI Study 22 discussion document). Here we focus on the need to bring together research on mathematics teachers as partners in task design.

Mathematics teacher education and professional development is generally being viewed as one of the key ingredient for improving mathematics education in school. In most countries the perceived importance of teacher learning/professional development is directly related to the (sometimes ambitious) nature of reform goals and standards which politicians and government education departments wish to implement in schools. It is now widely accepted that meeting these goals requires a great deal of learning of the part of practicing teachers (who may have learnt to teach under a different instructional/learning paradigm).

In this Special Issue we aim to identify and investigate the challenges that mathematics teacher educators/professional developers and teachers are likely to encounter as they design and implement new 'tasks' to help teachers in their learning and (sometimes innovative) classroom practice. Just as the design of new tasks, including the nature of the resources used to accomplish the task, and the appropriation of the tasks in practice, can influence teacher learning, the tasks themselves can change and be enriched in the learning and appropriation process. In addition, and not less importantly, teacher educators/professional developers need to change in terms of moving from 'providing tasks and courses' for teachers, to working in partnership with teachers for task design in/for mathematics teaching and professional learning. We know from the literature (e.g. Gueudet et al. 2013) that 'true' communities of practice (Wenger 1998) do not develop as a matter of course.

We see 'task design' here in the wider sense; that is tasks can be

.   mathematical tasks (including mathematical tools) developed and designed in/for teaching (e.g. tasks in/for textbooks);
.   learning sequences designed for teaching (e.g. 'didactical design');
.   modules designed in/for professional learning.

The Special issue has four sections:

1.  Designing with tools
2.  Designing for student learning & 'didactical designs' (e.g. Brousseau)
3.  "Design-in-use"
4.  Design for/in teacher education/collectives/communities of practice/professional development
This is an open call to the mathematics education community to suggest papers under one of the four headings. In order to be considered, please submit a 500 word extended abstract, clearly outlining the following:

1.  title of the paper & author/s
2.  Objectives/purpose/research question
3.  Perspective/theoretical framework
4.  Methods/ techniques/modes of inquiry
5.  Data sources/evidence/materials
6.  Results and/or substantiated conclusions or warrants for claims made/arguments/point of view
7.  Scientific/scholarly significance of the study

Please send extended abstracts (of 500 words) to Birgit Pepin at birgit.pepin@hist.no or Keith Jones at D.K.Jones@soton.ac.uk by 1rst January 2014. Submissions will be considered by the SI editors by 31rst January 2014, and full papers will be due 30th April 2014. The Special Issue is likely to be published by the end of 2014.

We look forward to your contributions!

Birgit Pepin & Keith Jones

Jerry P. Becker
Dept. of Curriculum & Instruction
Southern Illinois University
625 Wham Drive
Mail Code 4610
Carbondale, IL  62901-4610
Phone:  (618) 453-4241  [O]
            (618) 457-8903  [H]
Fax:      (618) 453-4244
E-mail:   jbecker@siu.edu