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Home arrow Mathematics arrow Mathematics Teacher Preparation in Central America and the Caribbean: The Cases of Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela

The Continuing Development of Mathematics Teachers

The continuing preparation of Mathematics teachers has at least two modalities: diplomas or permanent teacher development programs, and advanced preparation. Below, an analysis of graduate academic programs (advanced preparation) that currently have a significant impact on teacher development is presented.

Specialization Programs

Castrillon and Solis (2009) reported on 36 academic programs (12 % of the total) that had an area of specialization in Mathematics Education, Mathematics or Physics. They also pointed out that a hybrid or blended model of face-to-face and distance was more common that simply face-to-face. Currently there are ten programs for specialization in Mathematics Education and all but one are face-to-face. They last between two and three semesters and generally focus on the professional practice of in-service teachers. Nine of them include courses in Mathematics.

The reduction in the number is mainly explained by the fact that in the last decade the specialization programs, related to the preparation of Mathematics teachers, have been developed under a tension generated by the implementation of the Teacher Statute (Laws 1278 of 2002 and its regulatory decrees). These regulations, among other matters, govern the academic careers of teachers in the public sector, including conditions to ascend on the salary scale. One of its conditions limited the possibilities of ascending via the title of specialization and incentivized preparation at the Master’s and doctoral levels. The reduction can also be explained in terms of a State policy that encouraged the creation of Master’s degrees focused on teaching rather than on research.

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